Martin Shkreli, CEO of Turing Pharmaceutical and chairman of League of Legends Team Imagine, has been arrested in his Manhattan home today, December 17th 2015, on fraud charges. According to reports from MSN and The New York Times, Shkreli is charged with using stock from his company, Retrophin Inc to illegally pay off his unrelated business dealings. He is also alleged to “have made secret payoffs and set up sham consulting arrangements.”
Shkreli’s name made Global headlines months ago when the 32-year-old CEO bought the rights to the drug Daraprim and raised it from $13.50 per tablet to $750. Daraprim is a drug that can treat toxoplasmosis and is commonly given to patients that have lowered immune systems due AIDS, Leukemia, and chemotherapy. After immense backlash, Shkreli hired a crisis publicist to try and explain his company’s decision. Even still, the price increase has still been heavily criticized. Donald Trump has been cited as calling Shkreli a “spoiled brat” and upon being offered a sizable, $2,700 campaign donation, Bernie Sanders refused it and gave the money to an HIV clinic, all the while having a spokesman say they would not accept money from “this poster boy for drug company greed.”
The drug increase has nothing to do with why Shkreli has been arrested. Brooklyn Attorney Robert Capers said “Shkreli essentially ran his company like a Ponzi scheme where he used each subsequent company to pay off defrauded investors from the prior company.” (quoted from Bloomsberg). One lawyer was arrested with Shkreli on conspiracy charges.
In relating news, the New Yorker reports that Harland Dorrinson, the defense attorney for Martin Shkreli, has raised his attorney fees from $12,000 an hour to $60,000 an hour.