Men in Barnet arrested for selling fake and dreadly drugs

These fake drugs were seized as part of the same operation in Australia last year

These fake drugs were seized as part of the same operation in Australia last year

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Times Series: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Reporter - north London

Detectives investigating the sale of millions of fake and fatal medicines to people across the world have made arrests in Barnet.

The 34-year-old was arrested at his home in the borough at 6am today, and he is believed to be part of the money-laundering arm of a criminal franchise across Europe.

A man from Hackey was also arrested as part of the same arrest warrant, and an address in Watford was also raided.

Evidence including account books, trading documents and computers were found at the addresses, as well as £30,000 in cash.

It is believed that they laundered money through the bank accounts of a local charity.

Arrests have also taken place in other countries as part of the joint investigation between Austria, France and Spain, conducted by Eurojust.

It is believed that victims as far afield as Australia have paid around £12m for potentially lethal counterfeit impotency, slimming and anti-smoking pills via more than 400 websites since March 2012.

Detective Chief Superintendent Tom Manson, of the MPS specialist, organised and economic command said: "Today's operation with our counterparts in Austria and Europol has been about taking down a highly organised crime group who make an incredible amount of money by selling potentially harmful drugs.

"These so-called medicines are peddled on very professional looking websites which feature convincing medical advice, but the people behind them have no medical training.

“When you buy a product from these websites, you have no idea what concoctions you are actually getting or the conditions in which they have been made. Drugs sold on such websites frequently contain harmful ingredients and have been made in unhygienic conditions.”

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