Congress subpoenas Shkreli, but he may refuse to testify
The former pharmaceutical executive who unapologetically raised the price of a prescription drug from $13.50 a pill to $750 a pill overnight has been subpoenaed to appear Tuesday before Congress.
Martin Shkreli could refuse to testify by invoking the Fifth Amendment. He’s already done so to avoid turning over documents subpoenaed by another congressional committee investigating high prescription drug prices. He has been flippant about the scrutiny, saying he is acting as a good businessman.
The move to raise the price of Daraprim, a more than 60-year-old drug that treats toxoplasmosis, and similar decisions by other drugmakers, have sparked public outrage and calls to control skyrocketing drug prices.
“I have been trying for the better part of a year to get information from Martin Shkreli about his outrageous price increases, and he has obstructed our investigation at every turn,” the House Oversight Committee’s ranking member, Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), said in a statement. “He claims publicly that he wants to explain to Congress how drug pricing works. On Tuesday, he will get his chance.”
Also scheduled to appear before the House Oversight Committee are the interim CEO of Valeant Pharmaceuticals and the chief commercial officer of Shkreli’s former company, Turing Pharmaceuticals.
Shkreli resigned as head of Turing after his December arrest on charges of security fraud when he was with a different pharmaceutical company. He posted a copy of the subpoena on his Twitter account, with the text: “Found this letter. Looks important.”