Owner of company responsible for 2012 fungal meningitis outbreak sentenced

Outbreak map - Photo credit DOJ Barry Cadden at conveyor belt at NECC/Photo credit DOJ Glove box at NECC/Photo credit DOJ Clean room at NECC/Photo credit DOJ Glove box at NECC/Photo credit DOJ Mold or dust on glove box/Photo credit DOJ Shelf at NECC/Photo credit DOJ Internal room at NECC/Photo credit DOJ Vial with black substance/Photo credit DOJ Investigators at NECC/Photo credit DOJ Investigators at NECC/Photo credit DOJ Alice Machowiak/Photo credit DOJ Kathy Dillon/Photo credit DOJ Pauline Burema/Photo credit DOJ

The owner and head pharmacist of New England Compounding Center (NECC), the company responsible for the 2012 fungal meningitis outbreak linked to tainted steroid injections, was sentenced for his role in the outbreak on Tuesday.

Barry Cadden, 50, of Wrentham, Massachusetts, was sentenced to 108 months in prison and three years supervised release.

He will also be subject to forfeiture and restitution in amounts to be determined at a later date.

Cadden was convicted in March 2017 of racketeering, racketeering conspiracy, mail fraud and introduction of misbranded drugs into interstate commerce with the intent to defraud and mislead. He was found not guilty of 25 counts of second degree murder.

The tainted steroid injections infected 753 patients with fungal meningitis. Of those patients, 64 patients in nine states died.

Three Michiana residents died as a result of the tainted injections. They were identified by federal prosecutors as Pauline Burema, Kathy Dillon and Alice Machowiak.

The outbreak was the largest public health crisis ever caused by a pharmaceutical product, the government said.

The US attorney's office said Cadden authorized the drugs to be shipped before receiving test results indicating whether the drugs were sterile, never notified customers they were not sterile, and compounded drugs with expired ingredients.

The government said the company even used the names of celebrities on fake prescriptions such as Michael Jackson, Freddie Mae and Diana Ross.

Cadden faced a maximum sentence of 20 years on each mail fraud and racketeering count.

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