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2 men accused in 2012 meningitis outbreak face Michigan court hearing

Pharmacist cleared of murder in 2012 meningitis outbreak where 23 died in Michigan
Posted at 4:59 AM, Nov 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-14 17:49:38-05

LIVINGSTON COUNTY, Mich. (WXYZ) — A scandal surrounding tainted steroid injections landed in a Livingston County courtroom today.

The 2012 meningitis outbreak is responsible for killing at least 76 people and sickening nearly 800 in 23 states. A number of those were here in Michigan.

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It is considered the largest public health crisis ever caused by a pharmaceutical product.

Those impacted in Michigan are hoping to get their chance at justice.

Both men accused of putting tainted steroids out on the market are currently serving time in a Pennsylvania federal prison.

Authorities transferred them to Michigan for the court hearings.

Peggy Plettl was in court today for the testimony. She says her 88-year-old mother, Mary, died 3 months after receiving oneof those tainted injections back in 2012.

She says the defendants need to be convicted of second degree murder.

"They knew they were not manufacturing the drug up to medical standards. Shame on them. This was all about greed. This was all about making money. That's the bottom line."

Barry Cadden, the co-founder of the New England compounding center, and Glenn Chin, a pharmacist working for Cadden, are facing second degree murder charges.

It was in 2012 that hundreds became sick with meningitis infections — creating a national outbreak.

Most of the people were taking steroid injections for back pain.

The outbreak led to 76 deaths across the nation, including 23 people here in Michigan.

Investigators were able to trace the tainted steroids to Michigan clinics, including a pain specialist in Genoa Township.

Both men are already serving time in prison. Cadden is serving nine years after being convicted of racketeering and fraud in Massachusetts. Chin was sentenced to eight years in the same Massachusetts court.

At the time, Glen Chin was acquitted of second degree murder charges.

The court hearings are expected to last for the next two days.

Testimony continues on Friday morning. 7 Action News will be in the courtroom and we'll let you know if the defendants are bound over for trial.