HSA Seizes Over S$400,000 Worth of Illegal Sexual Enhancement Drugs Being Sold Online as Part of an International Enforcement Operation

One new illegal sexual enhancement product detected; more than 36,000 units of illegal sexual enhancement drugs seized

The Health Sciences Authority (HSA) took part in the 7th Operation Pangea, a global enforcement operation coordinated by INTERPOL from 13-20 May 2014, and seized its largest haul of illegal sexual enhancement drugs sold online, amounting to an estimated street value of over S$400,000. During this week of intensified checks, online platforms were screened to identify illegal health products being sold online in Singapore, and 10 persons were found to have contravened the Medicines Act, Poisons Act or Health Products Act.

2       HSA seized over 56,000 units of illegal health products, consisting of sexual enhancement drugs, contact lenses, cosmetic products and slimming products. Of these, more than 36,000 units were illegal sexual enhancement drugs which were found through HSA's laboratory testing to contain potent western medicinal ingredients, some of which were not declared on the products' labels.

Amongst these products are:
i) Black Deity, detected to contain sildenafil and tadalafil;
ii) Bull's Genital Male sexual stimulant, detected to contain chloramphenicol and sildenafil;
iii) Red Cialis Viagra, detected to contain tadalafil.

Please refer to Annex A and B (refer to PDF) for photographs of the products seized and information on the undeclared ingredients.

3       HSA's investigations revealed that these products were sourced from overseas. Of these three products, this is the first time HSA has detected Black Deity being sold in Singapore.


4       HSA strongly advises those who are holding on to these products to stop taking them immediately. Tadalafil and sildenafil are prescription only medicines which have to be used under medical supervision. They can cause adverse effects such as decreased or loss of vision and hearing, cardiovascular events such as stroke and a heart attack. In addition, tadalafil and sildenafil are not suitable for patients with some medical conditions including certain heart problems or patients who are taking heart medications such as nitrates.

5       HSA would like to reiterate the dangers of purchasing health products from dubious sources including the Internet. Consumers should exercise discretion when buying health products as consumption of poor quality and falsely labelled health products can cause serious health effects.  Consumers should also seek early and proper medical attention for management of their medical conditions, instead of self-medication. 

6       It is an offence to sell or import illegal health products, offenders may be liable for prosecution under the Health Products Act, Poisons Act and/or Medicines Act.

Anyone convicted of selling these illegal products will face a penalty fine of up to $100,000 and/or imprisonment for a period of up to three years under the Health Products Act; a penalty fine of up to $10,000 and/or imprisonment for a period of up to two years under the Poisons Act and a penalty fine of up to $5,000 and/or imprisonment for a period of up to two years under the Medicines Act.

7       Members of the public  are  encouraged to report any illegal activity involving sexual enhancement products or the sale of illegal health products to the Enforcement Branch of HSA at Tel: 68663485 or email: hsa_is@hsa.gov.sg during office hours (Monday to Friday) or email: hsa_is@hsa.gov.sg.

Operation Pangea

8       Operation Pangea is an international Internet week of action targeting the illegal online sale of counterfeit and unlicensed medicines. A total of 10 persons are currently assisting HSA in the investigations for the 7th Operation Pangea.

9       Coordinated by INTERPOL, the World Customs Organization (WCO), the Permanent Forum of International Pharmaceutical crime (PFIPC), the Heads of Medicines Agencies Working Group of Enforcement Officers (HMA WGEO), the pharmaceutical industry and the electronic payments industry, Operation Pangea is the largest Internet-based action of its kind and Singapore was among 111 countries and 200 participating agencies. The global operation targets the three main components abused in the illegal website trade and the people behind the illegal activity: the Internet infrastructure, the electronic payment system and the delivery service. 

22 MAY 2014

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