Business, Economics and Jobs

UPS to pay fine for illegal prescription deliveries


Shipping company UPS said Friday that it will halt deliveries from illegal online pharmacies as well as pay a $40 million fine.


Scott Olson

UPS said Friday that it will stop deliveries from illegal online pharmacies and pay a $40 million fine to the federal government.

The express shipping company said that it would comply with the US Justice Department to identify and stop working with the digital drugstores.

"The FDA is hopeful that the positive actions taken by UPS in this case will send a message to other shipping firms to put public health and safety above profits," FDA Criminal Investigations Director John Roth in a statement.

UPS collected about $40 million in fees from the online pharmacies, which will now be paid to the Justice Department.

Online pharmacies often sell drugs for discount prices and do not have extensive review procedures for powerful drugs like narcotic pain killers.

UPS had been warned by several US states to end working with the dispensaries but did not comply until now.

The shipper said it had been cooperating with law enforcement since 2007.

"As an industry leader, UPS is taking responsibility and playing a role to address the issue of illegal online pharmacies," UPS spokeswoman Susan Rosenberg said.