Sentence May Be Hard On|Viagra Counterfeiter


     HOUSTON (CN) – A Puerto Rican man faces up to 10 years in federal prison after a jury found him guilty of selling thousands of counterfeit erectile dysfunction drugs.



     Luis Garcia Torres, 41, of Patillas, Puerto Rico, was convicted on Friday of 12 counts of trafficking in counterfeit products, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
     Prosecutors presented evidence during the four-day trial that Garcia used the Internet to buy Viagra and Cialis pills for 45 cents each, and sold them for $2.
     During this time the retail price for Viagra and Cialis was $15 to $20 a pop.
     “Testimony further established that Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) agents, working in an undercover capacity, purchased approximately 3,600 Viagra and Cialis tablets from Garcia via the Internet from Jan. 25, 2010, through Aug. 16, 2010,” prosecutors said. “Evidence indicated the pharmaceuticals were exported from China and shipped from a Puerto Rico address used by Garcia to undercover agents in Houston.
     “The pharmaceuticals were later analyzed by the trademark holders and the FDA Forensic Chemistry Center and determined to be counterfeit.
     “Agents also obtained a search warrant for the email address used by Torres and found proof he had obtained counterfeit pharmaceuticals from China and discussed techniques to evade detection and seizure by law enforcement officials with individuals residing in China.”
     Garcia also faces a possible $2 million fine at his Aug. 30 sentencing.
     He is free on bond until then.

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