Counterfeit pills for erectile dysfunction caught in Galilee raid

Fake Viagra and Cialis pills distributed in the Galilee Triangle were intercepted and confiscated on Sunday morning in a joint raid by the Health Ministry's unit against pharmaceutical crimes, representatives of Pfizer and Eli Lilly - companies that manufacture the real thing - and the Israel Police. Ten pharmacies in the Arab towns were visited by the authorities and the counterfeit erectile dysfunction pills were taken for examination and found to be phony. The unit has been in operation for a year, trying to make a dent in widespread illegal sales of counterfeit versions of expensive and high-demand prescription drugs. Such fake pills, said the ministry, may contain negligible amounts of the active ingredient or none at all. The drugs also may include toxic substances. In most cases, the ministry said, these illegal copies of prescription drugs are sold over the counter. They "may cause incorrect self-diagnosis and the lack of safety information about the pills could cause side effects or dangerous interaction with other medications," the ministry warned.