Pharma boss, facing 30 years in prison, battles US extradition

The pharma boss accused of plotting to smuggle vast amounts of fake oncology meds into the US, and who could face up to 30 years in American prison, is in court trying to stop UK officials from sending him across the pond.

Narinder Kaulder, 48, allegedly supplied a drug known as Altuzan to American doctors during a 'large scale' smuggling operation between 2009 and 2012.

Altuzan is approved in Turkey but not in the US, and is a version of Roche's big selling, multi-licensed cancer med Avastin.

But the FDA found in 2012 that these versions of Altuzan did not in fact contain the active ingredient, bevacizumab, meaning that cancer patients given the drug were gaining no benefit. The FDA wrote to 19 medical practices that had purchased the possibly counterfeit drug.

Kaulder's UK drugs company River East Supplies is said to have sold cheap counterfeit drugs on behalf of discount online pharmacy CanadaDrugs, the Winnipeg-based firm at the centre of the scandal. He was arrested in 2015, but has been on bail during the case.

A court heard this week, as quoted by the Daily Mail, that US customs forms were "systematically falsified" during the alleged scam.

American prosecutors are now seeking Kaulder's extradition to face charges for conspiracy to smuggle goods, smuggling goods, and conspiracy to commit money laundering. If sent to the US and found guilty, he could get a three-decade sentence.

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