Martin Shkreli: I will Prevail, Allegations Baseless & Without Merit

Martin Shkreli

Martin Shkreli, the infamous biotech executive and former hedge fund manager expressed confidence that he will overcome all the charges filed against him by federal authorities, and indicated that their allegations are unsubstantiated.

In message posted on Twitter, Shkreli wrote, “I am confident I will prevail. The allegations against me are baseless and without merit.”

Prior to his Twitter message, Shkreli’s spokesman Craig Stevens said the biotech executive expects to be “fully vindicated from all the charges filed against him.  Stevens said the federal authorities failed to understand that the MSMB-related transactions “involve complex accounting matters.”

“ It is no coincidence that these charges, the result of investigations which have been languishing for considerable time, have been filed at the same time of Shkreli’s high-profile, controversial and yet unrelated activities,” said Stevens.

Shkreli was arrested by federal agents after the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York filed criminal charges and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed civil charges against him.

The federal authorities alleged that he committed securities fraud and operated his companies like a Ponzi scheme for a period of five years, when he was still working as CEO of Retrophin and hedge fund manager of MSMB Capital and MSMB Healthcare.  Shkreli pleaded not guilty and was freed on a $5 million bond.

Shkreli resigned as CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals

Shkreli resigned as chief executive officer of Turing Pharmaceuticals after his arrest. Ron Tilles, the chairman of the company will take over his position on an interim basis.  Tilles will continue to serve as chairman of the board of directors.

In a statement, Tilles said, “We wish to thank Martin for helping us build Turing Pharmaceuticals into the dynamic research focused company it is today, and wish him the best in his future endeavors.”

Drug-price hike

Turing Pharmaceuticals, a privately-held company became prominent as a notorious pharmaceutical company after acquiring the anti-parasitic drug, Daraprim and increasing its price by 5000% from $13.50 to $750.

The medical community, the Congress and even presidential candidates particularly Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders strongly criticized Turing Pharmaceuticals’ move, which was described as “price gouging” and “greedy.”

Turing Pharmaceuticals decided to reduce the price of Daraprim amid criticism. In a previous interview, Shkreli said, “We’ve agreed to lower the price on Daraprim to a point that is more affordable and is able to allow the company to make a profit, but a very small profit. We think these changes will be welcomed.”