Singapore

Over 39,000 illegal health products seized

The Health Sciences Authority (HSA) seized over 39,000 units of illegal health products, including weight loss products, sexual enhancement drugs and cosmetics between Sept 12 and Sept 19.

The items, some of which can cause serious health problems, have an estimated total value of more than $133,000. The cost of each unit ranged from $12 to $70.

Operation Pangea, now in its 10th year, is a global operation coordinated by Interpol that detects and disrupts the sale of illegal health products online.

The week-long operation targets three main areas: Internet infrastructure, electronic payment system and delivery service.

The number of units seized in Singapore has been rising in recent years.

More than 11,000 units were seized in 2015, worth more than $20,000 in total.

This rose to more than 25,000 units last year, worth about $21,000 altogether.

This year, three sellers who advertised their illegal products online are assisting HSA in investigations.

Among the items seized is a face cream, Tati Skincare, which the HSA had alerted the public to in June.

The product, which contains high levels of mercury and potent prohibited ingredients, resurfaced again this month with new packaging.

Many illegal weight loss 
products were found to contain sibutramine, which is linked to heart attacks and strokes.- THE STRAITS TIMES

HEALTH SCIENCES AUTHORITYInterpolhealth