FDAnews Device Daily Bulletin

FORMER FDA COMMISSIONER CRAWFORD UNDER CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION

May 2, 2006
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Former FDA Commissioner Lester Crawford has come under investigation by a federal grand jury for activities during his tenure at the FDA. This development comes in the wake of Crawford's alleged financial improprieties and false statements made to Congress.

Crawford has apparently been counseled by his attorney to invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination if ordered to answer questions, according to report. Crawford sold more than $50,000 in shares in the medical device firm Teleflex one month before he abruptly resigned from the agency in September 2005. In 2004, Crawford had reported the sale of a smaller-sized block of stock in the company, following the recommendation of an ethics official. That form appeared to indicate that with the sale, Crawford no longer owned any Teleflex stock.

Crawford did not appear at a court-ordered deposition April 28, where he had been scheduled to testify about the FDA's refusal to approve the controversial contraceptive Plan B for over-the-counter use.