Wolverhampton man jailed after illegally selling prescription medication
A man who illegally supplied millions of pounds worth of drugs, including sleeping tablets, sedatives and drugs to treat erectile dysfunction was jailed for five years today (5 June 2023) at Wolverhampton Crown Court.
Kieran Banks, 34, from Horseley Fields, was found guilty of illegally supplying drugs online, including Diazepam, Zopiclone, Zoplidem and Tadalafil. These drugs can only be supplied on prescription as they are potentially addictive and can have other significant side effects. They are regulated under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 and the Human Medicines Regulations 2012.
Banks is believed to have made millions from his criminal enterprise, including over £1.2m from sleeping tablets alone.
The CPS charged Banks, following an investigation by the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA). Evidence from Banks’s phone showed that he arranged the importation of drugs from India to the UK and then sold them online to individual buyers. The website he used to market and sell the drugs, UKsleepingtablets.org, was registered to a false identity. MHRA investigators conducted test purchases from the website, resulting in the unlawful supply of drugs. Investigators then traced the money trail to Banks, who was using multiple WorldPay bank accounts to disguise his role in the criminal enterprise.
Banks recruited an accomplice, Anita Rama, 45, from Wolverhampton, who stored the drugs in her home and prepared them for posting. Searches of her home revealed lists of drugs sales, parcels of drugs ready to send and receipts for posting. She was sentenced today to 12 months in jail, suspended for 18 months as well as 60 hours unpaid work, having earlier pleaded guilty to supplying Class C controlled drugs.
Specialist Prosecutor Ben Reid said: “Banks put members of the public at risk by unlawfully selling prescription-only drugs which he had imported from India, without any medical supervision. He did so for his own personal gain and with complete disregard for the potential impact of these products on the health of those to whom he sold.
“Banks boasted about the large profits he was making from his unlawful trading and enquiries revealed more than a million pounds had passed through his bank accounts. The CPS Proceeds of Crime Division will now pursue his criminal benefit through confiscation proceedings.”
The CPS works closely with the MHRA to bring offenders who profit from the illegal sale of drugs to justice.
Andy Morling, MHRA Deputy Director of Criminal Enforcement, said: “Criminals trading in medicines illegally are not only breaking the law, but they also have no regard for your safety. Taking powerful medicines such as these can lead to serious adverse health consequences. You should never take prescription-only medicines without appropriate medical supervision.
“We work hard to prevent, detect and investigate illegal activity involving medicines and medical devices to protect the public and defeat this harmful trade.
“The Criminal Enforcement Unit will continue working to protect your health by disrupting this harmful trade and bringing dangerous offenders to justice.”
Notes to editors
Ben Reid is a Specialist Prosecutor for the CPS Serious Economic Organised and International Directorate (SEOCID)
Kieran John Banks (DOB: 1.7.88) of Horseley Fields and Anita Jane Rama of Graisley (DOB: 12.5.77) are charged with:
- Supplying a controlled drug of class c to another between 1 October 2013 and 31 October 2017, contrary to section 4(3)(a) of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971. Sentenced to five years imprisonment
- Possessing criminal property, contrary to section 329(1) of the proceeds of crime act 2002. Sentenced to five years imprisonment (concurrent)
- Conspiracy to supply class c drugs between 1 May 2019 and 20 February 2020, contrary to section 1(1) of the Criminal Law Act 1977 and section 4(3) of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971. Sentenced to five years imprisonment (concurrent)
- Attempting to supply prescription only medicines, contrary to section 1 of the Criminal Attempts Act 1981 and section 255(1)(a) of the Human Medicines Regulations 2012. Sentenced to one years imprisonment (concurrent)
Anita Jane Rama of Graisley (DOB: 12.5.77) was charged with:
- Conspiracy to supply class C drugs between 1 May 2019 and 20 February 2020, contrary to section 1(1) of the Criminal Law Act 1977 and section 4(3) of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971. Sentenced to 12 months suspended for 18 months plus 60 hours unpaid work