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2 Sellers Allegedly Selling Overpriced Tocilizumab for COVID Patients Arrested in Entrapment

Police authorities arrested two (2) sellers who were allegedly selling overpriced Tocilizumab used to treat patients with severe coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

Operatives from the Criminal Investigation and Detection Group (CIDG) set up an entrapment operation against two people who were allegedly selling tocilizumab, an expensive arthritis medicine. Tocilizumab is used to treat patients with severe COVID-19, according to the report.

Overpriced Tocilizumab

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The culprits have been identified as Terence Jabatan and his accomplice, Romanito Bigkas, who were apprehended at Bacoor, Cavite, according to CIDG. One bottle of tocilizumab was recovered from the suspects by the CIDG.

Public who require the drug should purchase it from a pharmacy or a hospital, according to Deputy Provincial Officer Police Major Daniel Yema. He cautioned that the authenticity of drugs purchased online or from specific individuals cannot be guaranteed.

“‘Yung mga nangangailangan po sa pharmacy or sa ospital. Hindi po kaliwaan. Hindi din po tayo sigurado kung talagang authentic ‘yung binibili nating gamot,” Yema said.

According to the CIDG, the medicine is being marketed for P80,000 per bottle, roughly three times the market price. According to CIDG, the wholesale price of tocilizumab is P20,000, with a maximum retail price of P28,000.

Meanwhile, Jabatan said that all he wanted to do was help people who needed the medicine. He allegedly paid P79,000 for the medicine and then sold it for the same price, claiming that he is prepared to help via his goodwill.

The CIDG also arrested live-in partners Arnold Menor and Janmarie Mangosing in a separate investigation. One bottle of tocilizumab, worth P80,000, was seized by authorities. The suspect said they were unaware that selling tocilizumab was illegal.

READ ALSO: Fixer in Pasig City Arrested After Caught Forging Public Documents

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