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Thursday, July 31, 2014

FedEx Pleads Not Guilty to All Charges

Earlier this month the shipping powerhouse FedEx was indicted on charges of drug trafficking and 15 counts of conspiring to deliver prescription drugs for illegal online pharmacies. On Tuesday, FedEx pleaded not guilty to all charges, according to Bloomberg.

The plea of not guilty comes as little surprise after the company made claims in a statement earlier this month that they have worked with law enforcement officials to stop illegal online pharmacies. “We’re proud to say that we have partnered with the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security, DEA, and other federal, state and local law enforcement teams around the world to help stop illegal drug activity and bring criminals to justice. These efforts include providing assistance to the DEA in combating rogue internet pharmacies.”

Despite FedEx’s claims prosecutors went ahead with the indictment, stating that government officials warned FedEx at least six times since 2004 that their company was being used by illegal Internet pharmacies to deliver drugs.

The indictment states that FedEx, for ten years, knowingly allowed illegal online pharmacies to ship drugs. “While some Internet pharmacies were managed by well-known pharmacy chains that required valid prescriptions and visits to the patient’s personal physician, others failed to require a prescription before filling orders for controlled substances and prescription drugs,” a U.S. Sentencing Commission news release states. “These Internet pharmacies filled orders based solely on the completion of an online questionnaire, without a physical examination, diagnosis, or face-to-face meeting with a physician. Such practices violated federal and state laws governing the distribution of prescription drugs and controlled substances.”

Cris Arguedas, a lawyer for FedEx said in federal court, “We are a transportation company, not a pharmacy, not a website, not a doctor.”

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