Big Pharma billionaire arrested, charged with conspiracy and bribery of doctors

Saturday, October 28, 2017 by: Mike Adams

“Federal authorities arrested the billionaire founder and owner of Insys Therapeutics Thursday on charges of bribing doctors and pain clinics into prescribing the company’s fentanyl product to their patients,” reports the Daily Caller News Foundation, one of the best sources of real journalism in America today.

Addictive drugs that include opioids, we now know, are claiming over 64,000 lives a year in the United States alone.

The Department of Justice (DOJ) charged John Kapoor, 74, and seven other current and former executives at the pharmaceutical company with racketeering for a leading a national conspiracy through bribery and fraud to coerce the illegal distribution of the company’s fentanyl spray, which is intended for use as a pain killer by cancer patients.  

“More than 20,000 Americans died of synthetic opioid overdoses last year, and millions are addicted to opioids. And yet some medical professionals would rather take advantage of the addicts than try to help them,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions said in a statement. “This Justice Department will not tolerate this.  We will hold accountable anyone – from street dealers to corporate executives — who illegally contributes to this nationwide epidemic. “ 



Can Doctor-prescribed Painkillers Kill You?


About 18 women die every day of a prescription painkiller overdose in the US, more than 6,600 deaths in 2010. Prescription painkiller overdoses are an under-recognized and growing problem for women.

Although men are still more likely to die of prescription painkiller overdoses (more than 10,000 deaths in 2010), the gap between men and women is closing. Deaths from prescription painkiller overdose among women have risen more sharply than among men; since 1999 the percentage increase in deaths was more than 400% among women compared to 265% in men.

This rise relates closely to increased prescribing of these drugs during the past decade. Health care providers can help improve the way painkillers are prescribed while making sure women have access to safe, effective pain treatment.

‘Prescription painkillers’ refers to opioid or narcotic pain relievers, including drugs such as Vicodin (hydrocodone), OxyContin (oxycodone), Opana (oxymorphone), and methadone.

The prescription painkiller problem affects women in different ways than men.

  • Women are more likely to have chronic pain, be prescribed prescription painkillers, be given higher doses, and use them for longer time periods than men.
  • Women may become dependent on prescription painkillers more quickly than men.
  • Women may be more likely than men to engage in “doctor shopping” (obtaining prescriptions from multiple prescribers).
  • Abuse of prescription painkillers by pregnant women can put an infant at risk. Cases of neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS)—which is a group of problems that can occur in newborns exposed to prescription painkillers or other drugs while in the womb—grew by almost 300% in the US between 2000 and 2009.

Deaths from opioid overdoses have jumped ….


Erin Brodwin, Feb. 28, 2017

In the last 16 years, more than 183,000 Americans have died from overdoses related to prescription opioids.

  • In 2010, 29% of fatal overdoses involved so-called “natural” and “semisynthetic” opioids (morphine, oxycodone), while only about 12% involved methadone, a “synthetic” opioid.

Drug Overdoses Are the 9th Leading Cause of Death in the US


According to the U.S. surgeon general, more Americans now use prescription opioids than smoke cigarettes.

In Alabama, which has the highest opioid prescription rate in the U.S., 143 prescriptions are written for every 100 people.5 A result of this over-prescription trend is skyrocketing deaths from overdoses.

The most common drugs involved in prescription opioid overdose deaths, specifically, include8 methadone, oxycodone (such as OxyContin®) and hydrocodone (such as Vicodin®).

As noted by Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): “We know of no other medication routinely used for a nonfatal condition that kills patients so frequently.”9

There are safe options to treat pain, but education — both among doctors and patients — is sorely lacking.

In 2015, 52,404 Americans died from drug overdoses; 33,091 of them involved an opioid and nearly one-third of them, 15,281, were by prescription.

Why Are Pregnant Women Prescribed Narcotics?

A statistic that shows just how overprescribed and misused opioid drugs are is the prescription rate for pregnant women and women of childbearing age.

Despite carrying risks of pregnancy-related problems and birth defects, shockingly, nearly one-third of American women of childbearing age are prescribed opioid painkillers and more than 14 percent of pregnant women were prescribed opioids during their pregnancy.

Reasons for prescribing these extremely dangerous drugs include back and/or abdominal pain, migraine, joint pains and fibromyalgia. Clearly, if you are planning a pregnancy or are pregnant, you should go to great lengths to avoid narcotic drugs.

Drug Industry Is Responsible for Mass Addiction

Many believe the drug companies that create and sell these drugs need to be held accountable for America’s rapidly escalating drug problem, especially since several have been caught lying about the benefits and risks of their drugs.

As noted by the Organic Consumers Association, the drug industry has “fostered the opioid addiction epidemic” by:

  • Introducing long-acting opioid painkillers like OxyContin, which prior to reformulation in 2010 could be snorted or shot. Many addicts claimed the high from OxyContin was better than heroin.

From a chemical standpoint, OxyContin is nearly identical to heroin, and has been identified as a major gateway drug to heroin.

  • Changing pain prescription guidelines to make opioids the first choice for lower back pain and other pain conditions that previously did not qualify for these types of drugs.
  • Promoting long-term use of opioids, even though there’s no evidence that using these drugs long-term is safe and effective.
  • Downplaying and misinforming doctors and patients about the addictive nature of opioid drugs. OxyContin, for example, became a blockbuster drug mainly through misleading claims that Purdue Pharma knew were false from the start.

As a result of these factors, tackling the overdose epidemic will likely require not only curbing doctors’ overprescribing practices, but also curbing the manufacture of dangerous illicit drugs.

Ex-DEA agent: Opioid crisis fueled by drug industry and Congress

Whistleblower Joe Rannazzisi says drug distributors pumped opioids into U.S. communities — knowing that people were dying — and says industry lobbyists and Congress derailed the DEA’s efforts to stop it

Oct 15, 2017, Bill Whitaker

Source: :

Now in a joint investigation by 60 Minutes and The Washington Post, Rannazzisi tells the inside story of how, he says, the opioid crisis was allowed to spread — aided by Congress, lobbyists, and a drug distribution industry that shipped, almost unchecked, hundreds of millions of pills to rogue pharmacies and pain clinics providing the rocket fuel for a crisis that, over the last two decades, has claimed 200,000 lives.

JOE RANNAZZISI: This is an industry that’s out of control. What they wanna do, is do what they wanna do, and not worry about what the law is. And if they don’t follow the law in drug supply, people die. That’s just it. People die.

“This is an industry that allowed millions and millions of drugs to go into bad pharmacies and doctors’ offices, that distributed them out to people who had no legitimate need for those drugs.”

Joe Rannazzisi is a tough, blunt former DEA deputy assistant administrator with a law degree, a pharmacy degree and a smoldering rage at the unrelenting death toll from opioids.  His greatest ire is reserved for the distributors — some of them multibillion dollar, Fortune 500 companies.

They are the middlemen that ship the pain pills from manufacturers, like Purdue Pharma and Johnson & Johnson to drug stores all over the country. Rannazzisi accuses the distributors of fueling the opioid epidemic by turning a blind eye to pain pills being diverted to illicit use.




Late wife’s advice to ‘date’ daughters changed his life, says chairman of Centre for Fathering

Richard Hoon says making the effort to connect with his three daughters changed his life, as he pays tribute to his late wife for raising their children right.


Published  6:30 PM, OCTOBER 21, 2017

Updated 8:55 PM, October 22, 2017

SINGAPORE – My late wife always had a huge influence on my parenting philosophy as a dad, which helped me enjoy an extremely close relationship with our three girls. One of the earlier things she advised me to do — when the girls were in their teens — was to ‘date’ my daughters individually.

I was hesitant at first because it would mean having to spend thrice the amount of time with them — precious time I did not have as I needed to focus on my business to support the family. But after my wife asked me several questions and hearing my own responses, I realised I only knew my daughters superficially. I didn’t know who their teacher was or what their favourite books were.

So, I started doing simple things together with each of my girls. It could be taking walks in the park, watching movies and eating dinner together. As time wore on, I realised all that mattered to them was that I was available for them — my kids equated love with time.

Now that I’m 60, each of them are taking turns to ‘date’ me. A couple of months ago, my youngest daughter, Eve, told me to clear my schedule for my birthday because she was taking me out. For over 12 hours, we had lunch, watched a movie and had a candlelit dinner with a bottle of wine and just chatted. I was touched that she had applied leave to spend a day with her dad! Parents also equate love with time, too!

In early 2016, my wife was ill with breast cancer for six months. She was going in and out of the hospital, and we decided to bring her home, as we didn’t want her to be stuck in the hospital environment. So, we converted the family room into a fully air-conditioned room on the ground floor of our home to accommodate her hospital bed.

My two elder girls quit their jobs and moved back home — my eldest daughter was in Melbourne, while my second daughter was based in Sweden at that time — to care for their mother full time. When I saw my three girls in the room with her, I thought, life has reached a full-circle. There they were in the room, cuddling their mother as she lay on the bed totally dependent on their loving care.

My wife, who had lost all her hair by then, had to be intubated so that she could breathe because of her deteriorating condition. Her cancer had metastasised to her skin, so she had bandages all over her body and she had to wear diapers. Often, the girls would climb into her bed, sit next to her and hug her like she used to with them when they were babies. She had looked after them and tended to all their needs, and now, the roles were reversed because they had now become her caregivers. What a glorious sight to behold.

All three girls received training as caregivers, so that they would know how to inject medication and feed their mother. Each took turns to feed her, change her soiled diapers and wash her around the clock. I saw their unconditional love for their mum and I told my wife, even though she could not speak, that she had raised her children right. She smiled!

At around the time we moved my wife back home, my eldest daughter accepted a marriage proposal from her Canadian boyfriend. Because of my wife’s condition, they decided to solemnise their marriage in our home. We managed to hold the ceremony just a few weeks before she passed away. It was a simple ceremony attended only by immediate family and a small group of very close friends. We turned the living room into a chapel of sorts and got the bishop from our Methodist church to officiate at the wedding.

At one point, the bishop read out the marriage rites, “in sickness and in health, to have and to hold”. Right before he uttered the words “till death do us part”, he glanced over at my wife and me. He then told my daughter, “This is what it means. This is your commitment to each other.” My wife and I had been married for 36 years.

After the ceremony, they all surrounded and kneeled in front of their mum, kissing and hugging her. At the tea ceremony, my Canadian son-in-law called my wife “mum” for the first time. She actually could not drink the tea because she was intubated, but she did so because she was so happy and grateful that she could be present for the occasion.

Shortly after the wedding, we held a small party for about 30 guests in the house. My wife was tired, so she went back to her room. At my wife’s funeral, my son-in-law revealed in his eulogy that she had called him into her room during the party.

He said the first question she asked was if he was happy. He said that moved him to tears because he knew that she was in great pain and the first thing she cared about was, if he was happy. That, he felt, was the mark of a parent’s selfless love.

Now that she is no longer with us, there are times when I miss our banter. Without my spouse, I do recognise now that I may sometimes feel inadequate as a parent. After all, parenting is a team effort.

But I am grateful for all the good and bad times we got to spend with our children and as a family. I know that if I were to falter now with my adult children, they would be okay as their foundation had been well-laid.

I’m happy that in this life, I didn’t have to do many parenting retakes. At its defining moments, I had generally made the right calls. Can I still do better as a father? Certainly, and I hope to! Am I happy with what I’ve done? Seeing the results so far, yes….I have no regrets!”

Richard Hoon is the chairman of Centre for Fathering, and is father to Eve, 25, Ethel, 27, and Elizabeth, 29.



Beautiful, heart-breaking “love”  story. But the sad question we need to ask is — Do you have to die suffering that way? Is there no  better way to die from breast cancer?

Malaysian medium dies in wok during “human steaming” ritual

KUALA LUMPUR — A 68-year-old Malaysian medium died from heart failure and massive second-degree burns after he sat inside a large wok for about 30 minutes with a fire burning underneath.

According to The Star, Mr Lim Ba was performing the “human steaming” stunt on Monday (Oct 23) night during the Nine Emperor God prayer session at a Chinese temple in Kuala Sanglang, of Malaysia’s northern state of Kedah.

Devotees removed the cover after they heard erratic knocks from inside the wok, the news report said.

“By the time the ambulance arrived, my father had stopped breathing,” Mr Lim’s youngest son Kang Huai, 32, was quoted as saying.

Kang Huai said his father had undergone a heart bypass last year and was on medication for hypertension.

The news report said Mr Lim had been performing the stunt for more than 10 years despite objections from family members.

According to this daughter Wei Ling, 37, Mr Lim’s longest record for sitting inside the wok was 75 minutes.

In the same report, Federation of Taoist Associations of Malaysia (FTAM) president Tan Hoe Chioew said the ritual was not a normal Taoist practice and that it was more of a theurgy, or magic performance.

“This ‘steaming man’ ritual is rarely performed, and I dare not comment on what preparations are needed before you perform this.

“But in general, doing physical endurance stunts is not advisable,” he was quoted as saying. THE MALAY MAIL ONLINE

Adulteration of proprietary Chinese medicines and health products with undeclared drugs: experience of a tertiary toxicology laboratory in Hong Kong


Proprietary Chinese medicines (pCMs) and health products, generally believed to be natural and safe, are gaining popularity worldwide. However, the safety of pCMs and health products has been severely compromised by the practice of adulteration. The current study aimed to examine the problem of adulteration of pCMs and health products in Hong Kong.


The present study was conducted in a tertiary referral clinical toxicology laboratory in Hong Kong. All cases involving the use of pCMs or health products, which were subsequently confirmed to contain undeclared adulterants, from 2005 to 2015 were reviewed retrospectively.


A total of 404 cases involving the use of 487 adulterated pCMs or health products with a total of 1234 adulterants were identified.

The adulterants consisted of approved drugs, banned drugs, drug analogues and animal thyroid tissue.

The six most common categories of adulterants detected were nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (17.7%), anorectics (15.3%), corticosteroids (13.8%), diuretics and laxatives (11.4%), oral antidiabetic agents (10.0%) and erectile dysfunction drugs (6.0%).

Sibutramine was the most common adulterant (n = 155). The reported sources of these illicit products included over-the-counter drug stores, the internet and Chinese medicine practitioners.

A significant proportion of patients (65.1%) had adverse effects attributable to these illicit products, including 14 severe and two fatal cases. Psychosis, iatrogenic Cushing syndrome and hypoglycaemia were the three most frequently encountered adverse effects.


 In Hong Kong, Folk Remedies Are Sickening Patients