Pharma waste theft

“Half a ton of pharmaceutical manufacturing waste has been ‘diverted’ from the manufacturing site, enough to make more than $41 million worth of methamphetamine.
The thefts, which occurred over 10 years, led Thursday to a 15-year prison sentence in federal court in Kansas City for Garland Duane Hankins, 43. He worked for an environmental service company that contracted with the manufacturer to dispose of the pharmaceutical grade pseudoephedrine powder.
Pseudoephedrine is a key ingredient in methamphetamine.

Pharmaceutical manufacturing sites are normally very secure, as required by the regulatory requirements for licensing of the manufactured produst(s). However, security of waste outputs may not be so good, and as these drug wastes are removed for high temperature incineration, security is at best lax and in some cases almost non-existent. Traceability is poor, despite an obligation in pharmaceutical manufacturing and waste-related legislation.

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