The FAMHP, in collaboration with Belgian customs, took part in the international Operation PANGEA XIII from 3 to 10 March 2020. This operation, coordinated by INTERPOL, specifically targets the interception of illicit and counterfeit medicinal products and devices. In Belgium, inspections were performed at the Zaventem and Bierset control points.
The Belgian results of the international Operation PANGEA XIII are as follows:
- the General Administration of Customs and Excise made 8 974 checks;
- 610 packages underwent checks by agents of the FAMHP Special Investigation Unit;
- the FAMHP seized 203 of these packages, containing 23 563 tablets, creams, bottles, etc. worth an estimated 22 828 dollars (USD).
In Belgium, the online sale of medicinal products is strictly regulated. It is illegal to purchase prescription-only medicinal products online. The purpose of this regulation is to protect public health and to prevent counterfeit products.
Operation PANGEA is an international collaboration that has been carried out simultaneously by authorities in over 120 countries since 2008. The purpose of this operation is to combat the illegal sale and counterfeiting of medicinal products and the counterfeiting of medical instruments, and to combat the organised crime associated with this trade. Each year, operation PANGEA contributes, in particular, to the closure of websites that sell such products, to the disruption of electronic payments made by this business, and to the interception of products sent by courier companies and postal services at border controls.
The operation is also intended to raise awareness of the dangers associated with purchasing medicinal products online. More infos: www.medicaments-par-internet.be