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CVS Fined $75M in Sale of Meth Ingredient

CVS, the nation’s largest drug store chain, will pay a record $75 million fine and hand over $2.6 million in profits because it illegally allowed the sale of large quantities of pseudoephedrine, a key ingredient in the production of meth. Though stores in California and Nevada were the primary offenders in 2007 and 2008, the company admitted that it was also vulnerable for more than a year in 23 other states, as criminals were allowed to carry out enough repeated purchases to make the illicit substance—some made up to a dozen purchases in a single location in one day. CVS blamed its own monitoring system. For most of the buyers, CVS’s generic line was good enough and many even used their discount cards to earn rewards points on their illegal purchases. "Apparently, smurfers are good shoppers too," one assistant U.S. Attorney said.