‘Pharma Bro’ quits: Martin Shkreli leaves Turing amid charges of swindling investors
Shkreli announced resignation from the company he founded after FBI arrested him Thursday on charges he duped investors in his former hedge fund
Pharmaceutical entrepreneur Martin Shkreli has resigned as chief executive of the company he founded a day after being arrested on fraud charges.
Shkreli’s Turing Pharmaceuticals caused international outrage in September after it hiked the price of a Daraprim, a 70-year-old drug used by cancer and Aids patients, by 5,000% overnight.
On Thursday, Federal Bureau of Investigation agents arrested Shkreli at his Manhattan home on charges that he duped investors in his former hedge fund, MSMB Capital Management.
In a statement Turing said it had appointed Ron Tilles, chairman, as interim CEO. “We wish to thank Martin Shkreli for helping us build Turing Pharmaceuticals into the dynamic research-focused company it is today, and wish him the best in his future endeavors,” said Tilles.
The 32-year-old pleaded not guilty in Brooklyn federal court on Thursday to seven counts of securities fraud and conspiracy. He was released on bail and tweeted: “Glad to be home. Thanks for the support.”
The charges are unrelated to his tenure at Turing.
United States attorney Robert Capers of the eastern district of New York has accused Shkreli of operating a Ponzi scheme that had cost investors more than $11m. According to Capers, Shkreli used another biopharmaceutical company, Retrophin, as his “personal piggybank” and duped investors into investing in his company by lying about its success and its assets.
“The charges announced today describe a securities fraud trifecta of lies, deceit and greed. As charged, Martin Shkreli targeted investors and retained their business by making several misrepresentations and omissions about key facts of the funds he managed,” Capers said.
Shkreli, who has previously denied these allegations, faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison if convicted on all charges.