June 28, 2017: Distributor of Counterfeit Medications Arrested
HOUSTON – A 47-year-old woman appeared in federal court today for allegedly smuggling a counterfeit corticosteroid known as Diprospan into the United States and trafficking the misbranded and counterfeit drug through a store known as Naturavida, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Abe Martinez.
The criminal complaint alleges that Carolina Aguilar Rodriguez aka “Doctora” sold the counterfeit Diprospan to undercover federal agents on at least five occasions. According to the charges, Rodriguez was not licensed to dispense prescription medications in Texas, and Naturavida was not licensed as a Texas pharmacy. Rodriguez allegedly made a deal to sell 100 vials of Diprospan to an undercover federal agent in May and accepted a $1,200 deposit. However, the complaint alleges she subsequently pulled out of the deal after a police raid on another supplier.
The criminal complaint alleges the drugs came from El Salvador. Diprospan is not approved for use or sale in the United States and is not manufactured in the United States.
Immigration and Custom’s Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations, U.S. Food and Drug Administration - Office of Criminal Investigations and the Houston Police Department conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Julie Redlinger is prosecuting the case.
A criminal complaint is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.