Thursday, January 26, 2012

Breast implant boss arrested in France



"Breast implant owner of a French maker at the centre of a safety scare has been arrested in southern France.
Poly Implant Prothese (PIP) founder Jean-Claude Mas, 72, was held at his home in Six-Fours-les-Plages, police sources told reporters.
In 2010, France banned PIP implants made with the low-grade industrial silicone, amid fears they could rupture and leak.
Up to 400,000 women in 65 countries are believed to have been given implants.
In France, 30,000 women were advised to remove the breast implant.
Mr Mas has been under investigation since he revealed in a police interview last year that PIP ordered employees to hide the unauthorised silicone when they visited its factory.
He told police in an interview last year that PIP had deceived European safety inspectors for 13 years.
But he has insisted they posed no threat to health and attacked the French authorities for offering to pay for their removal because it put women through a "surgery risk".
He also said he had "nothing" to say to women facing surgery for their removal and that victims had only filed complaints "to make money".
Excerpts from Mr Mas's interview have been re-examined by a French magistrate.
The BBC's Christian Fraser in Paris said he had been "quite arrogant" about what had happened and had not felt any remorse.
Around 2,700 women in France have filed complaints against Mr Mas.
Women in 65 countries - mainly in Latin America and elsewhere in Europe - have received implants made by the company, which closed down in March 2010.
The medical advice in the UK, where 40,000 are affected, is that there is no need for all the implants to be removed, only those causing problems such as pain or tenderness.
In England, the NHS will only replace them in exceptional circumstances and the NHS in Wales said it would only do so when it was deemed medically necessary.
Northern Ireland women who received PIP implants for health reasons will have them replaced, but the NHS will only remove, not replace, those inserted for cosmetic reasons.
Scotland's Health Secretary Nicola Sturgeon said concerned women who had them fitted privately would be offered advice and the option of removal if necessary. There are no records of PIP implants being used by the NHS.
The international police agency Interpol has said Mr Mas is wanted in Costa Rica over a drunk driving charge.
It said the "red notice" over an alleged incident in June 2010 was "totally unconnected" to PIP."
in BBC

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