Four individuals, including the CEO, have been sentenced to jail by an Indonesian court for their involvement in the death of individuals caused by cough syrup.
The leader and three other employees of a company in Indonesia were given prison sentences on Wednesday for breaking drug safety laws, as their cough syrup has been connected to the deaths of over 200 children. According to the company’s lawyer, they were found guilty and will serve time in jail.
According to a charge sheet, Afi Farma, an Indonesian company, was charged by prosecutors for producing cough syrups with high levels of harmful substances. The four officials were accused of deliberately not testing the ingredients, even though it was their duty and they had the resources to do so.
The legal representative of the company, Reza Wendra Prayogo, stated that they have rejected any accusations of negligence and the company is currently deliberating on whether to file an appeal.
A court in Kediri, East Java province, where the company is located, sentenced the officials, including CEO Arief Prasetya Harahap, to a two-year prison term.
The prosecutors wanted to imprison the accused for up to nine years. They stated that Afi Farma did not conduct tests on the ingredients from their supplier. Instead, they relied on certificates provided by the supplier to ensure product quality and safety.
In October, Reza informed Reuters that BPOM, Indonesia’s drug regulator, does not mandate thorough testing of ingredients for drug manufacturers.
As countries such as Gambia and Uzbekistan continue to grapple with the deaths of numerous children due to contaminated cough syrups, there has been a global push to increase regulation of drug supply chains. This recent case highlights the importance of tighter oversight in preventing future tragedies.