Germany: pharmacist tried over watered-down cancer drugs

A pharmacist accused of preparing thousands of doses of cancer drugs with too few active ingredients in order to benefit financially has gone on trial in Germany.

News agency dpa reported that the 47-year-old's trial opened Monday at the state court in Essen. Identified only as Peter S. due to German privacy rules, he is charged with violating Germany's medicinal products law in 61,980 cases, 27 counts of attempted bodily harm, and fraud.

The alleged offenses took place between 2012 and 2016. Prosecutors say the defendant claimed the full costs of the faulty medicines from public health insurers, causing them financial damage of some 56 million euros ($65 million) and affecting hundreds of patients.

The man was arrested in November 2016. If convicted, he could face up to 10 years in prison and a ban from his profession.