July 1, 2013 / 8:31 AM / 6 years ago

Teva says cleared of wrongdoing after man's death in France

A sign bearing the logo of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries is seen in its Jerusalem oral solid dosage plant (OSD) December 21, 2011. REUTERS/Ronen Zvulun

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel’s Teva Pharmaceutical Industries said on Monday that French prosecutors had cleared it of any operational failures after the death of a 92-year-old man last month.

A preliminary investigation showed there was no trace of the sedative zopiclone in the drugmaker’s diuretic furosemide, Teva said in a statement.

French police said on June 9 they were treating the man’s death as “suspicious” after he was given medicine that may have been wrongly labeled as a diuretic drug.

France’s pharmaceutical watchdog ANSM had asked pharmacies to take 190,000 boxes of Teva’s drug off their shelves just two days before the man died, saying they may contain zopiclone.

“The results of the investigation clear Teva of all suspicion of failure in its operations,” Teva Chief Executive Jeremy Levin said.

Teva, the world’s No.1 generic drugmaker, said ANSM’s decision to recall the drugs had been the right one, even though it proved unnecessary in retrospect.

Reporting by Ari Rabinovitch; Editing by Louise Ireland

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