91.7 Ann Arbor/Detroit 104.1 Grand Rapids 91.3 Port Huron 89.7 Lansing 91.1 Flint
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Jury finds pharmacy owner guilty of racketeering, not murder in tainted steroid case

Wikimedia Commons / http://j.mp/1SPGCl0
Steroids tainted with fungus killed 19 people in Michigan.

A jury in Tennessee has found the owner of a Massachusetts lab that sold contaminated steroids not guilty of second degree murder.  

But the jury did find Barry Cadden guilty on multiple racketeering and mail fraud counts.  

Hundreds of people around the country were sickened when their doctors injected them with steroids produced by Cadden's compounding pharmacy.  The steroid medicine was tainted with a fungus. 

Sixty-four people died, including 19 in Michigan, the most deaths of any state. 

Cadden was found guilty of racketeering and mail fraud, and he faces up to 20 years in prison. But being found not guilty of murder means he'll likely avoid a life sentence. 

Marc Lipton is an attorney who represents some of the Michigan victims in civil suits.

"Though we are disappointed that today's verdict does not provide total justice for the victims, we are very thankful for the prosecutor's hard work and persistence in making sure that Mr. Cadden will be branded a convicted felon for the rest of his life," Lipton said in a statement. 

Lipton's statement also alleges the federal government's lack of regulation of compounding pharmacies played a role in the tragedy.

"The lack of regulation in this area was the petri dish that allowed Mr. Cadden's fraud to grow, just like this dirty lab allowed the fungus to grow in his drugs," Lipton said in the statement. 

This case, Lipton said, is proof that federal agencies like the Federal Drug Administration need more funding to enforce health and safety laws. 

Tracy Samilton covers energy and transportation, including the auto industry and the business response to climate change for Michigan Radio. She began her career at Michigan Radio as an intern, where she was promptly “bitten by the radio bug,” and never recovered.
Related Content