The meningitis outbreak trial involving the New England Compounding Center (NECC) pharmacist Barry Cadden has reached a final verdict.
The meningitis outbreak trial involving the New England Compounding center (NECC) pharmacist Barry Cadden has reached a final verdict. Jurors found Cadden not guilty on all counts of second-degree murder, but guilty of racketeering and mail fraud charges, the Boston Globe reported.
Cadden, former co-owner and president of the NECC, had faced charges of racketeering, mail fraud, and murder after the 2012 fungal meningitis outbreak in which NECC pharmacists allegedly produced tainted steroids that led to 750 meningitis infections and 64 deaths in the United States.
During the 2-month trial, prosecutors accused Cadden of directing distribution of the contaminated vials despite knowing that the injections had been manufactured in unsafe and unsanitary conditions. According to prosecutors, Cadden’s failure to follow industry regulations led to the widespread contamination. The prosecutors claimed that he was responsible for at least 25 deaths in 7 states.
Cadden’s defense lawyers argued that prosecutors had overreached in accusing Cadden of murder, but conceded that some of the steroids were contaminated. They maintained that there was no evidence that Cadden was directly responsible for the fatalities, and that prosecutors had failed to demonstrate exactly how the steroids were contaminated.
A majority of the jurors voted to find Cadden responsible for 23 out of the 25 deaths, but the jury could not reach a unanimous decision to rule him responsible.
Cadden was acquitted of other charges as well, such as defrauding the FDA.
NECC supervisory pharmacist Glenn A. Chinn also faces second-degree murder charges. He is expected to be tried after Cadden.