Pfizer who is already under siege because of its criminal activities with regard to Neurontin and Zoloft now faces criminal charges by the government of Nigeria. The following is a report put out by Associated Press at 3:05 a.m. May 30, 2007 and published by The Washington Post amongst others:
From The Washington Post:
“The move represents a rare — perhaps unprecedented — instance in which the developing world’s anger at multinational drug companies has boiled over into criminal charges. It also represents the latest in a string of public-relations blows stemming from the decade-old clinical trial, in which Pfizer says it acted ethically.
The government alleges that Pfizer researchers selected 200 children and infants from crowds at a makeshift epidemic camp in Kano and gave about half of the group an untested antibiotic called Trovan (trovafloxan). Researchers gave the other children what the lawsuit describes as a dangerously low dose of a comparison drug made by Hoffmann-La Roche. Nigerian officials say Pfizer’s actions resulted in the deaths of an unspecified number of children and left others deaf, paralyzed, blind or brain-damaged.”
The lawsuit further charges researchers with failure to obtain consent from the children’s families and with knowledge that Trovan was an experimental drug with life-threatening side effects that was “unfit for human use.”
A panel of experts convened by the Nigerian government examined Pfizer’s actions, but its final report was suppressed without explanation. The Post obtained a copy last year, which revealed that the panel had concluded Pfizer’s actions violated Nigerian law, the international Declaration of Helsinki and the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child.
According to the suit, parents were banned from the ward where the drug trial occurred, and the company left no medical records in Nigeria. The criminal charges state: “Pfizer and its doctors agreed to do an illegal act,” and behaved “in a manner so rash and negligent as to endanger human life.”
“Compared to the reality of the drug industry, my book reads like a vacation post card” John Le Carre, Author, The Constant Gardner.
Indeed, the prescription drug industry’s corrupt practices once again pose a danger to the world community. Not since the Nazi Doctors Trial and the trial of 24 board members of the IG Farben the giant chemical-pharmaceutical company (split into BASF, Bayer, Hoechst-Aventis) who were tried and convicted at Nuremberg for crimes against humanity (1946-1947), has a government filed a criminal case against a pharmaceutical company and its contracted doctors.