The Federal Trade Commission asked a federal court Friday to hold “Pharma Bro” Martin Shkreli in contempt after Shkreli allegedly scoffed at a recent FTC investigation into his business dealings and failed to make a $64.6 payment. million he owed for his past crimes.
The FTC’s contempt motion follows what the agency described as iyou a Failed attempt to verify whether Shkreli has violated a court order prohibiting him from returning to work in the pharmaceutical industry.
Brianne Murphy, an attorney for Shkreli, called the issue with the FTC a misunderstanding that “can be resolved relatively quickly once we get additional information and context for them.” Murphy added that Shkreli’s new business does not conflict with the court order because the new company “is a software company, rather than a pharmaceutical company.”
Shkreli was released from federal prison last year after serving a shorter sentence. He was convicted of securities fraud in 2017 for mismanaging two investment funds.
Shkreli also increased the prices of the life-saving drug Daraprim by 4,000% while he was a director of Turing Pharmaceuticals. His conduct earned him the title of “America’s Most Hated Man” by multiple publications. Most recently, he was the subject of a 134-page ruling in 2022 from the US District Court for the Southern District of New York that barred him for life from participating in the pharmaceutical industry, as part of an FTC antitrust case. separate against him.
That legally binding order triggered a new investigation into Shkreli’s activities in October, when public reports indicated that he had co-founded a new “Web3 drug discovery software platform” known as Druglike, Inc.
When the FTC emailed Shkreli to obtain documents from him and to schedule an interview on the matter, Shkreli repeatedly missed deadlines and allegedly walked slowly in his responses, according to an FTC court filing on Friday.
“Shkreli has not, much less ‘diligently’, as required by Second Circuit law, attempted to reasonably comply with the Order,” the filing says.
The FTC also said that Shkreli was ordered to make his multimillion-dollar payment, which represents a refund of his ill-gotten Daraprim profits, by March 6, 2022. But in fact, the FTC said, “to date there has been no paid nothing for the judgment, and has made no effort to comply with this provision of the Order.”
Regarding its involvement in Druglike, the FTC added: “Shkreli’s non-compliance is also clear and unequivocal: Shkreli failed to file a Supplemental Compliance Report, provide access to relevant documents, or make himself available for an interview.”