CEO Drug Pricing healthcare Martin Shkreli Pharma

Martin Shkreli is Allegedly Using a Prison Cellphone to Run his Pharmaceutical Company

Martin Shkreli is using a cellphone in prison to run his pharmaceutical companies

What?

Yes, as incredulous this may sound, it would seem our prison system has failed to such an extent that we can’t stop inmates from possessing smartphones. But what makes all of this worse is the fact that the person who has access to such a luxury when he should be doing time is Martin Shkreli, an infamous name in the pharmaceutical industry. Not only would it seem that Mr. Shkreli has access to the internet and social media in the discomfort of his cell bed, but he’s also allegedly running his pharmaceutical company Pheonixus (formerly known as Turing Pharmaceuticals).

Who is Martin Shkreli?

Although Mr. Shkreli first came in the spotlight about four years ago in 2015, his opening act has made him stay quite fresh in the memories of quite a few people who were affected by his action. For this man was after all responsible for raising the price of a Toxoplasmosis curing drug Daraprim by 5000% overnight, increasing the price from $13.50 to $750. The reason? Procuring funding for further research to create a newer, more potent version of the drug. The kicker? There wasn’t a need for one; the old Daraprim was just fine.

The public didn’t respond well to the unjust price hike, but Mr. Shkreli didn’t waver, and the price remained ridiculously high. Karma would, however, come back to bite Mr. Shkreli when he was discovered and proved guilty of several counts of fraud (by way of which he earned millions, if I may add) and sentenced to a seven-year prison sentence in Fort Dix, New Jersey.

And that’s all we thought we thought we’d hear of the man for a while. Little did we know.

The claims against Mr. Shkreli

Lately, there’s been a report circulating that claims Mr. Shkreli is in contact with the outside world by way of a contraband smartphone. And not just in “contact” with the outside world, according to these reports Mr. Shkreli is actively controlling the decisions made at Pheonixus, even going so far as to fire the current CEO of the company when he demanded a pay raise, but then later rehiring him to the very same position.

The reasons for the re-hiring so soon after the dismissal aside, the fact that Martin Shkreli can control the company’s policies from a prison cell is very alarming and needs urgent addressing. The danger is only compounded by how much power Mr. Shkreli holds in the company; as of writing this article, he currently sits with 40% of the company’s shares, which grants him considerable power on the board.

Which is why the FBI is investigating into the matter currently.

What could the investigation result in?

If the investigation does end up revealing for certain that Mr. Shkreli is, in fact, controlling Pheonixus behind the scenes with a smartphone (when he’s clearly not supposed to),  he could be looking at an extra year added to his sentence, along with some other fines and perhaps being forced to forfeit some of his shares in Pheonixus.

If he’s caught, that is.

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