Federal prosecutors have alleged that a Massachusetts pharmacy, New England Compounding Center (NECC), displayed a shocking disregard for the lives of customers and that some employees bear criminal responsibility for their actions.
Drugs manufactured by the company caused a meningitis outbreak that sickened 778 people and killed 76 of them. Steroids produced by NECC, which is no longer in business, contained mold, said prosecutors. They have accused supervisory pharmacist Glenn Chin of failing to ensure that the production of the drugs was performed in a sanitary environment.
Chin's lawyer says there is no proof that he is guilty of second-degree murder, and instead placed the blame with the co-founder and former president of the company, Barry Cadden. Chin and Cadden are among a group of fourteen people charged over their roles in the outbreak but are the only two charged with second-degree murder. Three of the remaining twelve have pled guilty, and charges were dismissed against two. The remaining seven have charges pending, while Cadden was found guilty of fraud and racketeering but cleared of murder. He was sentenced to nine years in prison.