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Viagra trial halted after the defendant is hit by a lorry outside of court
7:50am Friday 23rd May 2014 in News
A man on trial for selling counterfeit Viagra in an £11 million fake drugs scam was hit by a delivery lorry outside court.
Seth Pennington, 41, was involved in a collision with the lorry as he was crossing the road outside the Old Bailey on the second day of his trial.
Pennington, Hartington Road, Brighton, suffered serious back injuries and was taken by ambulance to the Royal London Hospital.
Judge Charles Wide told the jury the trial would be suspended until the defendant had been treated in hospital.
He said: “I think you may know what’s happened and at least one of you might have seen what’s happened.
“Mr Pennington has been involved in an accident just outside the building and has been taken away in an ambulance.
“We don’t at the moment know what the situation is, what injuries he has suffered or what the prognosis is.
“I’m sorry I cannot give you more information but I’m sure you understand why.”
The jury was sent away until 2pm today.
Pennington was allegedly part of a gang, headed by 41 year-old Neil Gilbert, of Wanderdown Close, Ovingdean, which set up a lucrative online business offering cheap erectile dysfunction pills to customers across the world.
The gang is accused of using a series of “front” companies claiming to sell jewellery, fishing tackle and cosmetics to accept the electronic payments and laundered the proceeds through more than 100 bank accounts both in the UK and offshore.
Pennington is said to have been involved in the operation of one of the front companies and allowed payments to be made into his bank accounts.
He claims that his involvement was innocent and believed the products being sold were legal herbal medicines and cosmetics.
Pennington denies conspiracy to sell or supply unlicensed medicines between 2004 and 2012, two counts of selling or distributing counterfeit goods relating to Viagra and Valium, two counts of money laundering, possession of counterfeit goods, namely Valium and possession of a medicinal product without authorisation, namely Kamagra.
The court heard Gilbert has pleaded guilty to his part in the conspiracy.
The other members of the gang named in the conspiracy charge are Hugh Adair, 36, Catherine Laverick, 46, Sarah Laverick, 26, Mark Bristow, 44, Darrell Jacob, 37, and Kristina Soufalakis, 26.
Adair and the Lavericks, all of Primrose Cottage, Coronation Road, Ulceby, South Humberside, Bristow, of Lower Station Road, Crayford, Kent, Jacob, of Arundel Road, Peacehaven and Soufalakis, of Wanderdown Close, Ovingdean, Brighton, have all admitted their part in the operation.
The trial continues.
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