Glenn Adam Chin has become the first person to face criminal charges in connection with the federal investigation into the 2012 fungal meningitis outbreak caused by the New England Compounding Center. Yesterday, Chin was arrested at Logan International Airport in Boston, Massachusetts as he was about to board a flight destined for Hong Kong. He has been charged with one count of mail fraud related to the outbreak at the facility. While it is unclear whether or not Chin was attempting to flee the country to avoid prosecution, Paul Shaw, Chin’s lawyer, has stated that Mr. Chin was merely going to Hong Kong to attend the wedding of family friend.
Glenn Chin, 46, was the supervising pharmacist at the New England Compounding Center during 2012. He was in charge of the sterile rooms at the facility and making sure that the facility’s rooms and equipment were properly cleaned, sterilized and tested. It was during Chin’s tenure as supervising pharmacist that NECC manufactured and distributed steroid shots that were contaminated with black mold. As a result, countless patients across twenty three states-including Tennessee-were exposed to fungal meningitis. To date, 750 patients have contracted the illness, 64 of whom have died.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office has not yet filed any other charges in the matter, but continues to mount an investigation into the outbreak and additional charges against Chin and others are expected. Additionally, hundreds of people have filed civil suits against the NECC over the last two years. In late 2013, a preliminary settlement in the amount of $100 million was reached; however, this has not been approved by the courts as of yet.
In a statement made Thursday, the U.S. Attorney’s Office explained that Chin is being charged with “participating in a scheme to fraudulently cause on lot of [the steroids] to be labeled as injectable, meaning that it was sterile and fit for human use, and shipped to one of NECC’s customers.” At Chin’s arraignment Thursday, the prosecutor explained that Chin was aware that he was a suspect in a criminal investigation and failed to notify the authorities of his trip out of the country. Chin has been placed on home confinement for the time being and has been ordered to surrender his passport, as has his family. A probable cause hearing will be held on September 11, 2014.
In Nashville, The Higgins Firm routinely handles litigation involving harmful drugs, like the NECC steroid shots. Our Drug Injury Attorneys expertly litigate cases involving the following drugs and medical devices: Actos, Avandia, Digitek, Pradaxa, Stryker hip implants, testosterone therapy, and Yaz/Yasmin. If you or a loved one has been injured or become ill after taking a prescription drug or using a medication device, call our office today or click here to talk to one of our lawyers about your legal options. Your initial consultation is free.