Customs and the FAMHP seize 1.5 tonnes of illegal medicines

September 7, 2023

On 14 July 2023, customs and the FAMHP seized 1.5 tonnes of illegal medicines at Brucargo. This is one of the largest seizures in the European Union in recent years.

Source: FAMHP

A very large quantity of illegal medicines was discovered in a cargo of linseed at Zaventem airport (Brucargo) on 14 July 2023. The medicines were discovered after an inspection by the Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain (FASFC) in cooperation with the Special Investigation Unit of the FAMHP and customs. In total, more than 1.5 tonnes of medicines, or more than 1.6 million tablets were seized. In comparison, a total of 2 138 postal packages containing illegal medicines were seized by the FAMHP in 2022.

Further inspection found several illegal medicines: Careforce-100, Cobra-120, Pregacare-300, Artvigil-150. These medicines contain the following active ingredients:

  • sildenafil: an erectile stimulant that can be dangerous for people with underlying health problems;
  • pregabalin: a medicine used as an anti-epileptic, but which is increasingly turning up in illegal circles because it enhances the effects of illegal drugs (especially opioids);
  • armodafinil: a stimulant.

The FAMHP's Special Investigation Unit has launched an investigation. The FAMHP points out that the use of illegal medicines poses serious health risks. Moreover, it also complicates medical treatment.