United States Attorney Emily Gray Rice announced that two New Ipswich, New Hampshire, residents have been indicted on charges that they conspired to distribute misbranded prescription drugs, including controlled substances, from India.
John and Plabplueng Hayes were each charged with one felony count of conspiracy to introduce misbranded drugs into interstate commerce and one felony count of conspiracy to use a communications facility, the United States mail, to facilitate a drug trafficking offense.
According to the indictment, the defendants were part of a multi-national drug distribution operation. The defendants allegedly conspired with each other, and with co-conspirators in India and North Carolina, to receive hundreds of thousands of prescription drugs, including controlled substances, from India and other foreign locations. The defendants received these drugs at U.S. Post Office boxes throughout New Hampshire and Massachusetts, stored the drugs at their residence in New Ipswich and reshipped them in smaller parcels to individual customers throughout the United States based on instructions from the co-conspirator located in India.
“Consumers rely on the FDA to ensure that their medications are safe and effective. When misbranded drugs are introduced into the U.S. marketplace, the potential danger to the public's health is great," said Jeffrey J. Ebersole, Special Agent in Charge, FDA Office of Criminal Investigations' New York Field Office. "The FDA will continue to pursue and bring to justice those who place the public's health at risk.”
This case was investigated by FDA’s Office of Criminal Investigations, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Arnold Huftalen and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott Kaplan.
Charges set forth in an indictment are merely accusations and do not constitute proof of guilt. Every defendant is presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty.