ILLEGAL medicinal products worth over £100,000 have been seized in Northern Ireland.
The drugs, which included thousands of erectile dysfunctional pills, were discovered during an international crackdown targeting 99 countries worldwide.
Erectile dysfunction and anti-anxiety medicines, as well as unidentified “psychoactive substances”, were taken off the black market in NI this week.
It was part of an investigation codenamed Operation Pangea VI.
Local health authorities worked with regulators and customs authorities throughout the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland to disrupt the illegal online supply and import of medication.
Peter Moore from the Department of Health’s Medicines Regulatory Group said: “This operation is part of our continuing efforts to reduce the harm that can be caused to the NI public by those making use of the internet to commit crime or source their medicines.
“It is crucial that people realise that it isn’t worth bypassing the properly regulated system, which is in place to protect the public from the hazards of fake or substandard medicines.”
Worldwide the operation led to 58 arrests across 99 countries and the seizure of almost 10 million potentially life-threatening medicines, worth around £26m.
“My advice is simple,” Mr Moore continued.
“Stay well clear of unregistered websites offering unlicensed medicines and never consider purchasing medicines on street corners. Anyone illegally importing or supplying unlicensed medicinal products such as these has no regard for the potential harm they could pose”.