2 charged in $17M cancer drug fraud out of Great Neck-based pharmaceutical company Pharmalogical
CENTRAL ISLIP - Two men at a Great Neck pharmaceutical company are accused of selling $17 million worth of counterfeit prescription drugs, including fake cancer drugs.
William Scully and Sharad Lameh, of Pharmalogical, were at the federal courthouse in Central Islip Wednesday and pleaded not guilty to the 73-count indictment.
Prosecutors say Scully and Lameh sold $17 million worth of “misbranded and counterfeit drugs” to a number of health care providers across the country between 2009 and 2013.
According to the indictment, the pair “engaged in a scheme designed to fraudulently induce customers to purchase prescription drugs that were misbranded and not approved by the FDA for use in the United States.”
Two of those drugs, prosecutors say, are Altuzan and Mabthera. They are described as foreign drugs used to treat cancer that have not been approved in the United States.
Attorneys for Scully and Lameh called the charges “shocking.”
"Our clients do not believe they were selling anything improperly. They certainly did not think they were selling anything ineffective," said Peter Tomao, Scully’s attorney. "They believe that every drug that they were selling was in compliance with all regulations."
Their attorneys say the men voluntarily shut down their Great Neck business about a year ago when they learned they were being investigated.
Scully and Lameh were each released on $500,000 bond. They each face a maximum of 20 years in prison if convicted in the alleged fraud scheme.