Customs seize illegal medicines

AUSTRALIAN agencies seized more than 37,000 pills, including diet supplements and steroids valued at more than $147,000, at the Melbourne and Brisbane International Mail Centres last week.

Customs and Border Protection and the Therapeutic Goods Administration took part in a week-long international crackdown on fake and illegal medicines purchased over the internet.

The World Customs Organisation and Interpol co-ordinated Operation Pangea V. Agencies from more than 80 countries worked around the globe to seize substandard and counterfeit medicines and raise awareness of the risks associated with such medicines.

Many products available online are manufactured in unregulated and unsanitary conditions.

Most of the substances detected were slimming and diet supplements and erectile dysfunction medication, with some antibiotics, steroids and illegal substances commonly marketed as "legal highs".