(photo credit: Courtesy)
Almost 100,000 pills suspected of being counterfeit – including drugs that cannot legally be imported to Israel – were confiscated in an international campaign last week by the Health Ministry’s Pharmaceutical Crime Unit, the Israel Police and the Customs Authority. Efforts were also made to stop sales of the illegal products via websites.
Many of the counterfeit pills such as “Tiger King” were intercepted a
number of times in the past and found to contain very high amounts of
the active ingredients in erectile dysfunction drugs such as Viagra,
Cialis and Levitra. Others were phony diet pills, anabolic steroids
(pills and injectible drugs) for increasing muscle mass and mind-bending
The campaign was carried out at the initiative of a global organization
of pharmaceutical crime units, the World Health Organization and
Interpol. The packages of counterfeit drugs were caught in Ben-Gurion
Airport, the Allenby Bridge (meant for smuggling to the Palestinian
Authority and throughout Israel), Jerusalem, Eilat and Haifa. They posed
a significant health danger to the public, the ministry said.