At INTERPOL, we promote concrete law enforcement actions in the field with the ultimate aim of protecting the public from sub-standard and dangerous goods.  We offer an 'interventions package' to support all stages of an investigation from gathering intelligence, planning and implementing an operation, through to legal issues for cases that are brought to court.

On-the-ground operations are run on a national and regional level in order to disrupt transnational criminal networks involved in pharmaceutical crime. Directed at both physical outlets and Internet suppliers, these are multi-agency efforts supported by key scientific partners.

Our flagship operations – Storm (Southeast Asia), Mamba (Eastern Africa) and Pangea (targeting the Internet) – continue to go from strength to strength. Successive raids on licit and illicit markets have shown improved results in terms of seizures, arrests, convictions and the closure of illicit websites.

These operations both highlight the success of multidisciplinary enforcement action and confirm the crucial need for continued intervention in this area. 

Operation Giboia


A multi-country operation against pharmaceutical crime in Southern Africa.

Giboia 2015

Some 2,100 police, customs and health regulatory officers took part in the operation. Raids were conducted at markets, shops, warehouses, pharmacies, clinics and ports in more than 50 cities, as well as on transport vehicles.

Dates: 19-21 August 2015

Participating countries: seven in total (Angola, Malawi, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe)


  • More than 150 tonnes of counterfeit and illicit medicines, worth approximately USD 3.5 million, were seized;
  • Three illicit manufacturing facilities were shut down;
  • Some 20 pharmacies and shops selling counterfeit or illicit and potentially harmful items were shut down;
  • Routes used by criminal networks to traffic fake pharmaceuticals throughout Southern Africa and beyond were identified;
  • Some 550 individuals were arrested.

Giboia media release (18 September 2015)

Giboia 2013

More than 900 officers took part in some 550 coordinated raids and inspections of marketplaces, pharmacies and clinics, as well as illicit care centres and outlets, in around 30 cities and border points.

Prior to the operation, systematic training and coordinated multi-sector actions were undertaken in each participating country.

Dates: 1-3 October 2013

Participating countries: five in total (Anglola, Malawi, Swaziland, Tanzania and Zambia)


  • Almost 100 tonnes of illicit medicines were seized, including illicit and counterfeit versions of antibiotics, birth control, anti-malarial and analgesic medicines;
  • The seized illicit and counterfeit medicines, both branded and generic, are estimated to be worth approximately USD 3.5 million;
  • Diverted and expired medical products were also identified;
  • 181 suspects were arrested or placed under investigation;
  • Nine outlets unauthorized to sale medicines were closed across the five participating countries;
  • Two illegal clinics employing unqualified staff were closed in Malawi.

Giboia media release (10 October 2013)

09 June 2016

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14 January 2016

INTERPOL issues Red Notice against Papa Massata Diack at France's request

21 December 2015

Falsified and illicit medicines worth USD 7 million seized across Asia in INTERPOL-led operation

15 December 2015

Illicit online sale of medicines focus of INTERPOL training in Myanmar

09 November 2015

INTERPOL supporting French investigation into athletics corruption

02 November 2015

INTERPOL seminar creates network against pharmaceutical crime in Comoros

23 October 2015

Fighting pharmaceutical crime focus of INTERPOL training in Uganda

14 October 2015

Russia celebrates 25 years of INTERPOL membership

01 October 2015

INTERPOL holds first meeting on pharmaceutical crime in Middle East

18 September 2015

Illicit medicine manufacturers shut down in INTERPOL operation against pharmaceutical crime

26 June 2015

INTERPOL Storm meeting looks to enhance investigative expertise in pharmaceutical crime

18 June 2015

INTERPOL-coordinated operation strikes at organized crime with seizure of 20 million illicit medicines

27 May 2015

INTERPOL initiatives look to boost fight against pharmaceutical crime in Mauritania

19 November 2014

Dublin conference aims to set roadmap for combating pharmaceutical crime

29 October 2014

Media invitation for Global INTERPOL Conference – Ten Years of Combating Pharmaceutical Crime: Review and Prospects

25 June 2014

Kuwait requests INTERPOL Purple Notice after fake car parts used to smuggle drugs

06 June 2014

Collective effort required to turn back pharmaceutical crime says INTERPOL Chief

22 May 2014

Thousands of illicit online pharmacies shut down in the largest-ever global operation targeting fake medicines

20 February 2014

Combating pharmaceutical crime requires strong collaboration, says INTERPOL Chief

Training course develops expertise in investigating pharmaceutical crime

Operation Pangea: Aline Plançon, INTERPOL Pharmaceutical Crime unit

Operation Pangea: Kerry Mannion, US Food and Drug Administration

Operation Pangea: Junko Yamamoto, World Customs Organization