Hewlett-Packard Spy Scandal and Pfizer's Detectives
It has been amazing to follow the Hewlett-Packard Spy Scandal. Here we have a large company caught with their pants down hiring people to impersonate employees, board members and journalists to gain access to phone records of 240 individuals. They tried to plant spyware on journalist's computers to monitor what the reporters did and they discussed infiltrating news rooms with clandestine cleaning personnel, KGB style.
Of course I'm paying close attenention to this situation, based on my own experience. Those of you who have read “The Whistleblower—Confessions of a Healthcare Hitman,” know that Pfizer’s Pharmacia division hired a private investigator to monitor me.
The investigation took place after I had advised a company attorney of allegations of numerous illegal acts within the Genotropin growth hormone franchise. These allegations later resulted in a criminal grand jury investigation.
And of course, Pfizer recently requested “Confidential” designation of all documents related to the detective investigation.
As part of the ongoing litigation against Pfizer, we have asked the company to provide any and all documents that describe the company’s surveillance or monitoring of my activities. Unfortunately, Pfizer has produced far fewer of the original detective documents described in “The Whistleblower” than we already had, so they are either not forthcoming, or they have destroyed documents.
In fact, Pfizer says in court documents that defendants, “object to this document request because it is vague and ambiguous to the extent that it uses the words ‘surveillance’ and ‘monitoring’ to presuppose conduct that is not present in this case.”
For Pfizer to claim that their surveillance of me ‘is not present’ is perplexing. After all, Pfizer sends letters to organizers of my public appearances, before I show up and Pfizer and their lawyers monitor this personal blog every day. Of course we want to know what else is going on.
In the end, perhaps Pfizer’s reluctance to produce relevant documents is not be surprising considering that this company was recently forced to pay $430 million to resolve criminal & civil health care liability relating to off-label promotion.
And for those of you who want to read about the company detectivies, here are a few pages from my book: