FTC urges federal court to despise ‘pharma brother’ Martin Shkreli

FTC urges federal court to despise ‘pharma brother’ Martin Shkreli

Washington CNN —

The Federal Trade Commission on Friday ordered a federal court to contempt “Pharma Bro” Martin Shkreli after Shkreli allegedly flouted a recent FTC investigation into his operations and a $64.6 million payment he made for his owed previous misconduct, had not performed.

The FTC’s disclaimer follows what the agency called its a unsuccessful attempt to verify if Shkreli violated a court order preventing him from ever working in the pharmaceutical industry again.

Brianne Murphy, an attorney for Shkreli, called the issue with the FTC a misunderstanding that “can be resolved fairly quickly once we get additional information and context on it.” Murphy added that Shkreli’s new deal doesn’t conflict with the court’s order because the new company is “more of a software company than a pharmaceutical company.”

Shkreli was released from federal prison last year after serving a reduced sentence. He was convicted of securities fraud in 2017 for mismanaging two mutual funds.

Shkreli also increased the prices of the life-saving drug Daraprim by 4,000% when he was head of Turing Pharmaceuticals. His behavior earned him the title of “America’s Most Hated Man” in several publications. More recently, he was the subject of a 134-page judgment by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York in 2022, barring him for life from participating in the pharmaceutical industry as part of a separate FTC antitrust case against him.

That legally binding order sparked a new probe into Shkreli’s activities in October, when public reports indicated that he had co-founded a new “Web3 Drug Discovery Software Platform” called Druglike, Inc.

When the FTC emailed Shkreli to obtain documents from him and set up an interview on the matter, Shkreli repeatedly missed deadlines and was reportedly slow in responding, according to an FTC court filing Friday.

“Shkreli has not attempted — let alone ‘diligently’ as required by the Second Circuit statute — to reasonably comply with the order,” the filing reads.

The FTC also said Shkreli was ordered to make his multimillion-dollar payment — which is a refund of his ill-gotten daraprim profits — by March 6, 2022. In fact, however, the FTC said, “To date, he has paid nothing for the judgment and made no effort to comply with that provision of the regulation.”

Regarding its involvement in Druglike, the FTC added, “Shkreli’s non-compliance is also clear and unequivocal: Shkreli has not filed a supplemental compliance report, provided access to relevant documents, or made himself available for an interview.”