NECC Supervising Pharmacist Arrested At Logan International Airport
BOSTON - A Canton man was arrested today at Boston’s Logan International Airport in connection with the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s and the Justice Department’s Civil Division’s ongoing criminal investigation of New England Compounding Center (NECC).
Glenn Adam Chin, 46, was attempting to board a plane to Hong Kong when he was arrested by federal authorities. He was charged in U.S. District Court with one count of mail fraud. He is scheduled to appear before Chief Magistrate Judge Boal later today.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office and the Civil Division’s Consumer Protection Branch have had an active ongoing criminal investigation of NECC since the nationwide fungal meningitis outbreak began in the Fall of 2012. Following the outbreak, the CDC reported that 751 patients across the country were diagnosed with a fungal infection after receiving injections of preservative-free methylprednisolone acetate, or MPA, compounded at NECC. The CDC reported that of those 751 patients, 64 died.
Chin was a supervising pharmacist at NECC who was involved in compounding the contaminated MPA that caused the outbreak. The criminal complaint charges Chin with participating in a scheme to fraudulently cause one lot of MPA to be labeled as injectable, meaning that it was sterile and fit for human use, and shipped to one of NECC’s customers, Michigan Pain Specialists. As alleged in the affidavit, after receiving the MPA from NECC, doctors at Michigan Pain Specialists injected the drug into their patients believing it to be injectable as labeled. As a result, 217 of those patients contracted fungal meningitis, of which 15 died.
Although the criminal investigation of Chin and others is ongoing, the U.S. Attorney’s Office charged and arrested Chin today after federal authorities learned that he was planning to leave the country on an international flight that was scheduled to depart this morning.
If you are a victim in the NECC matter you may call the U.S. Attorney’s Office victim assistance message line at 888-221-6023 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to obtain case status information or assistance. You may also find information on our website at http://www.justice.gov/usao/ma/news.html.
The maximum sentence under the statute is 20 years in prison, followed by three years of supervised release and a $250,000 fine.
U.S.Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz; Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Division Stuart F. Delery; James Royal, Acting Special Agent in Charge of the Food and Drug Administration; Office of Criminal Investigations; Vincent Lisi, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; Shelly Binkowski, Inspector in Charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service; Jeffrey Hughes, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of Inspector General, Northeast Field Office; and Patrick J. Hegarty, Resident Agent-in-Charge, Office of Inspector General, Defense Criminal Investigative Service in Boston made the announcement today. The case is being prosecuted by George P. Varghese and Amanda P.M. Strachan of Ortiz’s Health Care Fraud Unit, and John W.M. Claud of DOJ’s Consumer Protection Branch.
The details contained in the complaint are allegations. The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.