Google

FDA monopoly enforcement goes after Google for $500 million in online pharmacy ad profits

Friday, February 10, 2012 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
Tags: FDA, Google, online pharmacies

eTrust Pro Certified

Delicious Pin It
(NaturalNews) The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently snagged a hefty $500 million forfeiture, one of the largest in history, from search engine giant Google for running advertisements on its AdWords service for Canadian pharmacies. The agency claims these ads, which were also viewable by Americans, facilitated the illegal shipment of prescription drugs into the U.S. in violation of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act, as well as the Controlled Substances Act.

A trophy in the FDA's trophy case of strong-armed regulatory enforcement actions, the $500 million forfeiture demonstrates the agency's intolerance for the sale of any drug that is not officially FDA-approved. But what it also embodies is a whole new level of government reach into private business practices, which in this case did not necessarily constitute a violation of the law on Google's part.

Since Google did not directly introduce or deliver Canadian drugs to U.S. customers, the company is technically not in violation of U.S. law. But according to the Justice Department, Google acted as an accomplice to the crime by "enhancing the ability of Canadian pharmacies to reach American consumers," according to The New York Times (http://dealbook.nytimes.com).

But does allowing various advertising as part of its service constitute engaging in criminal behavior? This is a blurry zone in federal law that was recently addressed in the debates about SOPA and PIPA as well, concerning whether or not allowing links to diverse content that could be in violation of the law, rather than directly censoring them, is illegal.

In this case, Google chose to enter a non-prosecution agreement with the government, which is basically a formal way of saying that Google essentially paid off the federal government not to prosecute the company. Such an agreement can go both ways -- on the one hand, the federal government gains protection against a countersuit for its potential overreach into Google's activities, while at the same time Google gains protection from creating for itself a criminal record.

Meanwhile, the only things that were technically accomplished in the case is that Google had to sacrifice a small percentage of its profits, and the FDA became $500 million richer. The public, on the other hand, gained nothing.

Since there was no actual legal case or ruling, Google is now technically free to continue allowing Canadian pharmacy advertising as it was never determined whether or not this practice is considered legal. So when you really think about it, the FDA just wanted a piece of the pie that is Google's profits, and really could not care less about consumer safety.

Sources for this article include:

http://www.fda.gov/ICECI/CriminalInvestigations/ucm276002.htm

http://dealbook.nytimes.com

http://www.dailytech.com

Get breaking news alerts on GMOs, fluoride, superfoods, natural cures and more...
Join over four million monthly readers. Email privacy 100% protected. Unsubscribe at any time.


Have comments on this article? Post them here:

comments powered by Disqus

Take Action: Support NaturalNews.com

Email this article to a friend

Permalink to this article:

Reprinting this article: Non-commercial use OK, cite NaturalNews.com with clickable link.

Embed article link: (copy HTML code below):
Most Popular
Today | Week | Month | Year

See all Top Headlines...



GET SHOW DETAILS
+ a FREE GIFT

Now Available at ShopNaturalNews.com

O3 Essentials OraJuvenate™
A powerful, cleansing dental cream for maximum oral/dental health.
New Cancer Solutions
Over 3 hours of content covering today’s best cancer tests, how to kill cancer cells and the best diets and exercise routines.
Freeze-Dried 100% Organic Whole Corn
Our freeze-drying method preserves taste, texture and nutrients better than any other food preservation method ever invented.
Fenix TK35 Flashlight
Tough, waterproof, extremely bright and it’s touted to throw an 800+ lumen beam more than 1,000 feet into the night.
Inca Treasure Smoothie Pack
This pack of our four most popular superfoods from South America is the perfect combo pack for smoothie lovers.
Pink Himalayan Salt
This salt delivers significant levels of magnesium, zinc and selenium, with trace levels of dozens of other elements.
Pinhole Glasses - Aviator Style
Pinhole glasses are becoming famous for helping people improve their vision without the risks of laser surgery.
Oxy-Rich Facial Serum
O3 Essentials Jojoba Oxy-Rich Facial Serum is cellular nourishment for your skin. Helps smooth fine lines while enhancing tissue elasticity.
Freeze-Dried 100% Blackberry Halves
Our freeze-dried blackberry halves are grown in Serbia under strict organic standards.

Also on NaturalNews:

Health Ranger Videos
Activist music
CounterThink Cartoons
Food documentaries
FREE Special Reports
Podcasts
Colloidal Silver

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Support NaturalNews Sponsors:

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Most Popular Stories

Flu shot kills 19-year-old, but vaccine industry still has total immunity against lawsuits
Here's a nutty fact: Eating more tree nuts lowers the risk of all-cause death by up to 20 percent
Six important facts you're not being told about lost Malaysia Airlines Flight 370
Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 now clearly a government cover-up: All evidence contradicts official story
10 other companies that use the same Subway yoga mat chemical in their buns
BLM fracking racket exposed! Armed siege and cattle theft from Bundy ranch really about fracking leases
High-dose vitamin C injections shown to annihilate cancer
U.S. treating meat with ammonia, bleach and antibiotics to kill the '24-hour sickness'
USDA to allow U.S. to be overrun with contaminated chicken from China
Vaccine fraud exposed: Measles and mumps making a huge comeback because vaccines are designed to fail, say Merck virologists
Battle for humanity nearly lost: global food supply deliberately engineered to end life, not nourish it
Diet soda, aspartame linked to premature deaths in women

25 Amazing Facts About Food

This FREE downloadable report unveils a collection of astonishing and little-known facts about the food we eat very day. Click here to read it now...

 

Resveratrol and its Effects on Human Health and Longevity - Myth or Miracle.

Unlock the secrets of cellular health with the "miracle" nutrient Resveratrol Click here to read it now...

 

Nutrition Can Save America

FREE online report shows how we can save America through a nutrition health care revolution. "Eating healthy is patriotic!" Click here to read it now...

The Healing Power of Sunlight and Vitamin D

In this exclusive interview, Dr. Michael Holick reveals fascinating facts on how vitamin D is created and used in the human body to ward off chronic diseases like cancer, osteoporosis, mental disorders and more. Click here to read it now...

Vaccines: Get the Full Story

The International Medical Council on Vaccination has released, exclusively through NaturalNews.com, a groundbreaking document containing the signatures of physicians, brain surgeons and professors, all of which have signed on to a document stating that vaccines pose a significant risk of harm to the health of children. Click here to read it now...

Health Ranger Storable Organics

GMO-free, chemical-free foods and superfoods for long-term storage and preparedness. See selection at www.StorableOrganics.com



Recommended Resources On:

Natural News trends
Health Ranger news
Natural News GMOs
Mike Adams tracker
Natural News photos
Natural News Global
Natural News in focus
Natural News connect
Natural News shocking stories
Natural News radar
GMOs
Quackwatch
Vaccines
Health freedom
Dr. Paul Offit

This site is part of the Natural News Network © 2014 All Rights Reserved. Privacy | Terms All content posted on this site is commentary or opinion and is protected under Free Speech. Truth Publishing International, LTD. is not responsible for content written by contributing authors. The information on this site is provided for educational and entertainment purposes only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional advice of any kind. Truth Publishing assumes no responsibility for the use or misuse of this material. Your use of this website indicates your agreement to these terms and those published here. All trademarks, registered trademarks and servicemarks mentioned on this site are the property of their respective owners.

eTrust Pro Certified Android app on Google Play

Sign up for the FREE Natural News Email Newsletter

Receive breaking news on GMOs, vaccines, fluoride, radiation protection, natural cures, food safety alerts and interviews with the world's top experts on natural health and more.

Join over 7 million monthly readers of NaturalNews.com, the internet's No. 1 natural health news site. (Source: Alexa.com)

Your email address *

Please enter the code you see above*

No Thanks

Already have it and love it!

Natural News supports and helps fund these organizations:

* Required. Once you click submit, we will send you an email asking you to confirm your free registration. Your privacy is assured and your information is kept confidential. You may unsubscribe at anytime.