Pharmaceutical executive of Indian origin receives 41 months in prison for fraudulent sale

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New York: An Indian-born pharmaceutical executive has been sentenced by a Texas federal judge to 41 months in prison for fraudulently selling workout supplements, officials said.

North Texas Acting Federal Attorney Prerak Shah on Friday announced the conviction of Sitesh Patel, 37, on a conspiracy charge related to the supplements’ poor image.

Patel and several of his co-defendants had admitted in North Texas District Court in Dallas to importing substances with false and misleading product labels, according to the Department of Justice.

According to court documents, Patel, who was vice president of SK Laboratories, played a key role in the development and manufacture of the popular workout and weight loss supplements known as Jack3d and OxyElite Pro.

Workout supplements are diet products used to increase energy for athletics and exercise.

Patel also admitted a charge of bad image which the ministry said related in part to OxyElite Pro, which was recalled in 2013 after a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) investigation into whether the supplement caused liver damage. among consumers.

A federal grand jury – a panel of citizens that determines whether there is prima facie evidence – accused Patel and others in 2015 of selling some of their products without determining whether they could be used safely.

Shah said, “We are proud to hold this accused accountable for lying to the public about ingredients that may cause them harm.”

Patel was sentenced on Friday by federal judge Sam A. Lindsay, who previously ordered SK Laboratories, to waive $ 6 million in connection with the case, the department said.

The court had previously sentenced four people associated with USPlabs, which distributed the products, to various prison terms.

In another Texas case, an Indian-born engineer admitted in another federal court that he had fraudulently filed claims for $ 10 million in COVID-19 relief loans, according to the Justice Department.

Shashank Rai, 30, made the admission Tuesday in Federal Court for the Eastern District of Texas, the department said.

He had claimed that his company, Rai Family LLC (Limited Liability Company) had 250 employees and had applied for loans under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) under the CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security).

The loans were meant to be a lifeline for businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and help them keep their employees on their payrolls and can be written off if certain conditions are met.

Two Texas state agencies found that there was no record of Rai’s company having any employees or income, according to the department.

Investigators found handwritten notes in the garbage outside Rai’s house for investing the $ 3 million he requested in one of the PPP loan applications, court documents show.

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