GlaxoSmithKline Pleads Guilty In U.S. Drug Fraud Case

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) is to pay $3bn (£1.9bn) in the largest healthcare fraud settlement in US history.

The drug giant is to plead guilty to promoting two drugs for unapproved uses and failing to safety data about a diabetes drug to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The settlement will cover criminal fines as well as civil settlements with the federal and state governments. The case concerns the drugs Paxil, Wellbutrin and Avandia.

GSK, one of the world’s largest healthcare and pharmaceuticals companies, admitted to promoting antidepressants Paxil and Wellbutrin for unapproved uses, including treatment of children and adolescents. The illegal practice is known as off-label marketing. The company also conceded charges that it held back data and made unsupported safety claims over its diabetes drug Avandia. In addition, GSK has been found guilty of paying kickbacks to doctors.


“The sales force bribed physicians to prescribe GSK products using every imaginable form of high-priced entertainment, from Hawaiian vacations [and] paying doctors millions of dollars to go on speaking tours, to tickets to Madonna concerts,” said US attorney Carmin Ortiz.

Andrew Witty, the firm’s chief executive, said procedures for compliance, marketing and selling had been changed at GSK’s US unit: ”We have learnt from the mistakes that were made,” Mr Witty said. “When necessary, we have removed employees who have engaged in misconduct.”

Do you think all drug companies are involved in this kind illegal practice, or is GSK just an exception? What is your opinion regarding this case? Share your thoughts with us in the comment box below!

Source: BBC News

Image: CEO World

Wrongly Convicted Man Exonerated, Released After 16 Years

A Colorado man wrongly convicted and sentenced to life in prison for the rape and murder of a woman found strangled with a dog leash was exonerated on the basis of new DNA evidence and set free on Monday after spending more than 16 years behind bars.

Robert “Rider” Dewey walked out of a courthouse in Grand Junction, Colorado, a free man after a judge found him innocent of the 1994 killing and said his exoneration marked a “historic day” for the state.

Mesa County District Judge Brian Flynn said during the brief hearing: “This is a reminder to the entire system that it’s not perfect.” He said prosecutors had not committed misconduct, Dewey had been represented by good defense attorneys, and an impartial jury had heard the case but added: “Despite all these things, the system didn’t work.”

Prosecutors announced earlier on Monday they were seeking an arrest warrant for a new suspect in the 1994 killing who was identified by DNA testing and is already serving a life sentence for a similar 1989 murder.


Dewey was sentenced to life without parole for the rape and murder of 19-year-old Jacie Taylor in the western Colorado town of Palisade. Taylor’s partially clothed body was found in her bathtub in June 1994. She had been beaten, sexually assaulted and strangled with a dog leash.

Dewey, wearing a blue dress shirt and slacks and long brown hair held in place by braids, left the courthouse with his attorneys and pen-pal girlfriend Angela Brandenberg, who had not met him in person until Monday’s hearing. His first act of freedom was to inhale deeply from a burning sprig of sage lit by Brandenburg, which he described as a Native American ritual.

Should wrongly convicted people receive compensation for the years robbed from them? Share your thoughts with us!

Source: Yahoo News

Image: The Inquisitr