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Fake drugs intercepted by Swiss customs

The drugs were in transit at Zurich airport Keystone

Customs officials have seized more than one million counterfeit anti-anxiety tablets at the Zurich airport, stopping the shipment while it was in transit between China and Egypt.

The Swiss Agency for Therapeutic Products, Swissmedic, said Friday the tablets were counterfeits of the Xanax compound made by Pfizer. They were found in four crates that weighed over 400 kilogrammes.

Swissmedic said in a statement that laboratory tests showed the intercepted tablets contained no active ingredients, adding that they could not be recognised as counterfeit at first glance.

The agency pointed out that Swiss patients were not affected by the case. All prescription drugs purchased in Switzerland via legal distribution channels are safe, efficient and of the best possible quality it added.

The fake drugs will be destroyed. Swissmedic has informed the international health authorities, particularly those in China and Egypt, of the seizure.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR