In 2016, Peppino Fiori was jailed for 12 months for the importation and sale of dangerous steroids and unlicensed erectile dysfunction medicines from his home address in Surrey.
Following a further investigation by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, it was discovered that Fiori continued to import and possess with intent to sell, unlicensed drugs, coordinating his illegal business from a rented storage unit whilst on bail.
Despite receiving numerous warnings from MHRA as early as 2013, Fiori chose to ignore these and was sentenced again last week to 12 months immediate custody for reoffending.
This man’s illegal activity posed a serious health risk to the public. These medicines are potent and can cause serious side effects.
Approximately 60,640 doses of unlicensed medicine were seized including 2,200 doses of generic Tramadol, a powerful class C drug. It is thought that Fiori’s hoard was valued at more than £60,000.
MHRA Head of Enforcement, Alastair Jeffrey, said:
Selling medicines outside of the regulated supply chain is a serious criminal offence. These criminals are motivated by greed and have no concern about your safety or welfare.
Unlicensed medicines can be dangerous as their contents are unknown and untested. Chances are they simply will not work, but they may contain dangerous ingredients. The consequences for your health can be devastating.
If you need advice or treatment for a condition, visit your GP. Make sure you obtain medical products from legitimate high street outlets or online retailers displaying the distance selling logo.
MHRA is currently running the #FakeMeds campaign to warn people against buying potentially dangerous or useless unlicensed medicines sold by illegal online suppliers. Visit www.gov.uk/fakemeds for tips on buying medicines safely online and how to avoid unscrupulous sites.