Movie style drug heist

Professional Thief

I read a very interesting article from the AP (click here to read it) about a group of thieves scaling a large facility run by one the world’s largest pharmaceutical companies, Eli Lilly. These thieves are not your every day criminals however, as this heist involved very sophisticated techniques and resulted in one of the largest pharmaceutical heists in history, with a total wholesale value of over $75 million dollars.

The thieves took mostly antidepressants like Prozac and anti-psychotic pills like Zyprexa. Experts say that the likely destination for the trailer load of drugs is overseas, either in Asia or Latin America and that the thieves likely had a buyer for the stolen goods before hand. In some of the countries in those parts of the world, drug regulations and enforcement of those laws are much more lenient than in North America or Western Europe. However, that does not mean that there is no chance that some of those drugs would end up back in the homes of people in the US.

A lot of these drugs can be destined for online stores that operate out of off shore countries and some of the customers may be Americans looking to buy their medicines at lower prices or people that could not obtain a doctor’s prescription for the drugs but still want them for recreational purposes.

This type of activity happens more often than people might think (I’m referring to heists, not drug use) even though it rarely makes the news. I suspect that if the total value of this heist was not as extreme as it was but maybe a more modest $10 million or so, then it likely would not have made any headlines at all. Assuming these thieves don’t get caught, they will have made a lot of money. If they were this sophisticated with their planning, it is likely that they also planned out how exactly they would bring this money back in to the US (if they are American) without raising eyebrows.

Maybe at some point in the future a movie will be made about it similar to The Italian Job. Usually these types of heists that make the movies or news headlines involve gold, diamonds or money, so the relative uniqueness of the product being coveted makes for an interesting story. It would also be interesting to see where the drugs will end up and if the consumers have any idea that they are in fact stolen or if they even care. Hopefully, someone in Hollywood will be interested enough to follow this story and see where it goes. I would watch that movie about it if it was made. There you go Hollywood, a $10 guaranteed return on investment…Now get to work on it.