On October 26, 2010, pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline was ordered to pay a criminal fine of $150 million and a civil penalty of $600 million for the faulty manufacturing of drugs in Cidra, Puerto Rico. Along with the popular anti-depressant, Paxil and the antibacterial cream, Bactroban, GlaxoSmithKline sold 18 other tainted and ineffective drugs. According to US News and World Report, "some drugs were contaminated with bacteria or had a cracked coating that rendered them ineffective. Some did not meet federal standards because they were too strong or too weak, and others were mixed with different medicines—and then sold in the same bottle."
The deficiency in GlaxoSmithKline’s distribution process was discovered by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) following a tip from whistleblower, Cheryl Eckard. Ms. Eckard worked for GlaxoSmithKline from 1992 to 2003, where she served as a manager of global quality assurance at their Research Triangle, N.C. plant. She was asked to inspect the Puerto Rico plant, where she cited many problems with the manufacturing process. According to the lawsuit, she was ignored by GlaxoSmithKline, and eventually told her boss that "she would not participate in a cover-up of the quality assurance and compliance problems at Cidra."