Woman fined for selling illegal prescription medicines

Lisburn Magistrates' Court.
Lisburn Magistrates' Court.

A 43 year-old woman has been convicted of the sale and supply of illegal prescription medicines from her Eastern European convenience food store in Lisburn.

At Lisburn Magistrates’ Court, Eduarda Verygiene received fines totalling £750 plus court costs, having pleaded guilty to three charges before the court in relation to the possession and sale of unauthorised, prescription only and pharmacy medicines.

The court heard that the Department of Health’s Medicines Regulatory Group (MRG) enforcement officers visited the Tonagh Drive shop in September 2016, seizing over 3,000 tablets amongst a range of illegal medicines found on open sale. The medicines seized were of Lithuanian and Russian origin and included those for the treatment of infection, digestive disorders and for pain relief.

Peter Moore, Senior Medicines Enforcement Officer with the Department of Health said: “Medicines are not everyday consumer goods - and appropriately, strict legal controls apply to their sale and supply. If you buy a medicine from unregulated high street sources like this, you may well be exposing yourself to a product that is unlicensed, fake or could react adversely with any other medication you may take.

“People should only take prescription medicines after an appropriate consultation with their GP or other healthcare professional and source them from a registered pharmacy.”

Professor Mike Mawhinney, Head of the Medicines Regulatory Group, added: “This kind of illegal activity poses a significant risk to public health. The Department will continue to be vigilant in the regulation of medicines and in maintaining public safety.

“To this end we will continue to conduct further inspections across Northern Ireland and take action where necessary.”