Sunday, November 25, 2007

Indiana State Police Searching for 2 Truckloads of Stolen Insulin

This weekend, the media in Indiana reported that Indiana State Police were investigating a theft involving two truckloads of stolen insulin, undoubtedly from manufacturer Eli Lilly and Company, which manufactures most of the insulin sold in the U.S. in the company's Indiana facilities (although the company also has a substantial manufacturing operation in Puerto Rico, mostly for the insulin analog Humalog).

Reports indicated that the stolen trucks contained health and beauty aids and 21 skids of insulin stored in the refrigerated trailers, which were stolen from a Plainfield, IN trucking company between 11:45 p.m. Wednesday and 10:45 a.m. Thursday.

Indiana State Troopers continued Friday to try to determine how and why the trailers were stolen. An increase in truck traffic has occurred in the Plainfield area along with construction of several warehouses near I-70 and the Indianapolis International Airport.

One of the stolen trailers is a 2004 Utility, and the other is a 2006 Great Dane, according to the news release. The trailers' only distinguishing characteristics are their red axles and wheel hubs, troopers said.

The relevant trailers were stolen from Daum Trucking, along Indiana Route 267 just north of U.S. 40. The trailers were not painted with any company logo and had stainless-steel sides, State Police said. Other reports indicated that the license plate of the 2004 Utility trailer was Indiana 614231, and its VIN number is 1UYVS25384M157905. The plate of the Great Dane trailer is Indiana 609868, and its VIN number is 1GRAA062X6W705555. The two trailers could be worth more than $1 million.

Sgt. Rich Myers of the Indiana State Police said the thieves must have known what was in the trailers. Myers also says that by not maintaining the medicine properly, the thieves could be selling a toxic product.

"If this insulin is not maintained at a proper temperature, it can go bad, and if someone does take this insulin it can cause very bad sickness and even death."

At this time of year, the biggest concern is not excessive heat (which is also damaging), rather, freezing of the insulin. Either way, failure to maintain the temperature could put patients at risk.

Indiana State Police urged anyone who is offered insulin from other than normal medical and retail suppliers to contact the Indiana State Police or the nearest law enforcement authority to report the circumstances of how the insulin was offered. They can reach them at: (765) 653-4114. The toll-free number is: (800) 225-8576.


News Sources:
http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071123/LOCAL/71123021

http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071124/LOCAL/711240476/-1/LOCAL17

http://www.wishtv.com/Global/story.asp?S=7400876&nav=0Ra7

3 comments:

Jenny said...

Scott,

I saw this come over the news wire, but what REALLY irritates me is we don't need the license number of the truck. We need to know the lot numbers of the insulin, or failing that at least WHAT KIND of insulin it was.

I assume it was from Lilly, given the location. Surely they could come pu with more information to help us identify it?

Scott said...

I agree, but I would guess Lilly is trying to keep the matter quiet in hopes that police will apprehend the criminals before news of a recall or something like that makes the news. Optimistic, if you asked me, but patients should be demanding more details. Maybe a call to Lilly is in order?!

Anonymous said...

If Lilly is fortunate enough to recover the missing insulin, will they proceed with distribution because "there is no scientific evidence" indicating that the contents have been compromised?