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EBay paying $59M to settle allegations over online pill press sales

E-commerce company eBay has agreed to pay $59 million to resolve allegations that pill presses and encapsulation machines sold on its website violated the Controlled Substances Act (CSA).

Pill compression machines and encapsulation machines are equipment that may be used in the production of illegal drugs. The Department of Justice (DOJ) said they are capable of producing counterfeit pills that are indistinguishable from legitimate drugs and, in some cases, may be laced with fentanyl. stated in the release Wednesday.

The CSA regulates drug manufacturing equipment and requires verification of purchases and reporting to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

The Justice Department said eBay is suspected of failing to comply with requirements for thousands of pieces of equipment sold through its website, including pill presses that can produce thousands of pills per hour.

Many of the people who bought pill presses on eBay have been indicted in illegal counterfeit pill cases, the release states.

“The Department of Justice is committed to taking all available enforcement actions to ensure that companies involved in the sale of the devices that enable these dangerous polls comply with the Controlled Substances Act,” said Justice Department Deputy for Opioid Affairs. said Vanita Gupta, Attorney General and Chairperson of the Commission. The Epidemic Civil Litigation Task Force said in a statement.

According to the Department of Justice, EBay has agreed to maintain and enhance its compliance program for prohibited and restricted items, including, among other things, the sale of pill presses, counterfeit molds, stamps, molds, and encapsulation machines.

“This settlement holds eBay accountable for its compliance violations and serves as a reminder to other e-commerce companies that the Department of Justice will enforce these requirements to ensure these products do not fall into the hands of criminals in the future. “This will help ensure that no one ever does,” said U.S. Attorney Henry Leventis. said in a statement.

in Statement issued on Wednesday, eBay said it is proud of its voluntary efforts to remove items from its marketplace. The company denies the Justice Department’s allegations, but said it was in its “best interest” to settle to avoid the “cost, uncertainty and confusion” that would come with litigation.

“In advance of requests from the Department of Justice and other authorities, and years before any government attention was paid to these products, we were able to identify molds, dies, pill presses, and other materials that could be used to make counterfeit pills. “Ebay’s actions to remove one product prevented tens of thousands of pill sales. We prohibit potentially problematic listings from appearing on our marketplace,” the company said in a statement. mentioned in.

“Government officials have repeatedly praised eBay’s partnerships with law enforcement and efforts to assist in investigating the use of illegal pill presses,” the statement said.

Updated: 12:48 p.m.

Copyright 2023 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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