[DIGEST: New York Times, Huffington Post]
Much-reviled pharma-CEO, Martin Shkreli, has been ousted from his position as chief executive of Turing Pharmaceuticals, according to the New York Times. A Turing spokesperson acknowledged Shkreli’s resignation following his arrest, after being charged with securities fraud and conspiracy.
Prosecutors case again Shkreli Credit: Source.
Turing is a privately-held company. Its current chairman, Mr. Ron Tilles, will step in as interim chief executive. Tilles has held the chairmanship of Turing's board since the company was founded late last year, and he is expected to continue in that position. In the company's statement, Tilles said he's excited by the chance to guide Turing and that the company is "committed to ensuring that all patients have ready and affordable access to Daraprim"--a life-saving drug that Shkreli also recently raised the price on dramatically after his company acquired the U.S. rights to it.Tilles and Shkreli co-founded Retrophin, the pharmaceutical company notorious for raising prices on an important HIV/AIDS drug. That move caused Shkreli’s ouster at Retrophin and earned Shkreli the title of “most hated man in America,” based on headlines at the time.
Shkreli's indictment courtroom sketch on Dec. 17, 2015. Credit: Source.
Shkreli’s rapid downfall has delighted many, who were appalled by his unapologetic stance, according to the Huffington Post. The 32-year-old former hedge fund manager had recently shocked the public again
with a second price gouge, this time on Daraprim, which provides the only approved relief against toxoplasmosis. Shkreli had raised the price from $13.50 to $750 per pill. (Toxoplasmosis is a parasitic infection that is considered opportunistic against persons with compromised immune systems.)
Shkreli’s unrepentant attitude, particularly on social media, earned him few admirers. He recently spent $2 million on the only copy of a Wu-Tang Clan album that he said he didn't plan to listen to. Today’s news of his ouster will likely be greeted with cheers.
Shkreli has entered a not-guilty plea against the securities fraud and conspiracy charges, which carry a possible sentence of up to 20 years in prison. He was released on $5 million bail.
Shkreli recently was named CEO of a second company, KaloBios Pharmaceuticals, Inc., based in South San Francisco. There is as yet no news on whether he will retain his position there.