The United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Vermont said Lisa Wheeler, 56, of Lyndonville, Vermont, was sentenced by United States Chief Judge Geoffrey W. Crawford on April 19, 2022 to a term purged for selling mislabeled pet medications that were not approved for use in the United States. Chief Justice Crawford also sentenced Wheeler to three months probation during which she must complete 20 hours of community service with a humane society or other animal charity. The maximum penalty for this offense was one year in prison and a $100,000 fine.
Wheeler also agreed to confiscate a significant amount of pet medication, which was seized from his residence pursuant to a search warrant executed in August 2020. As the government noted during sentencing , Wheeler fully accepted responsibility for the offense and cooperated with the investigation.
According to court records, in 2020 Wheeler received large shipments of prescription pet products, including flea medicine, from a UK company associated with Bestflea.com, Petbucket.com and Pharma Group. These drugs were unapproved versions of prescription pet medications available in the United States. Wheeler received hundreds of bulk packages of these pet medications and repackaged them to ship to customers in the United States. Wheeler received a commission from the owner of British companies for each package she dispatched on their behalf.
Acting Special Agent in Charge Ronne G. Malham, of the Food and Drug Administration’s Bureau of Criminal Investigations in New York, said “the FDA’s responsibility to protect public health includes ensuring that prescription drugs for animals are safe and effective and distributed in accordance with valid veterinary prescriptions. . We will continue to pursue and bring to justice those who attempt to evade laws designed to protect our pets. »
This case was investigated by the Food and Drug Administration (Office of Criminal Investigations) and the US Postal Inspection Service. U.S. Attorney Nikolas P. Kerest praised the efforts of the FDA’s Office of Criminal Investigations and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service in investigating Wheeler.
The United States is represented by Assistant United States Attorney Joseph Perella. Wheeler is represented by Mary Nerino, Esq. of the Office of the Federal Public Defender in Burlington, Vermont.