'Pharma Bro' Martin Shkreli Requests Release From Prison to Work on COVID-19 Cure (UPDATE)

Shkreli is asking to be let out for just 3 months.

shkreli covid 19 cure

NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 4: (L to R) Lead defense attorney Benjamin Brafman walks with former pharmaceutical executive Martin Shkreli after the jury issued a verdict at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York, August 4, 2017 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. Shkreli was found guilty on three of the eight counts involving securities fraud and conspiracy to commit securities and wire fraud. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

shkreli covid 19 cure

UPDATED 4/29, 5:00 p.m. ET: In court documents obtained by Complex, Shkreli claims he has “devoted countless hours to developing a potential cure." But according to the probation board, Shkreli's "belief that he can develop a cure for COVID-19, something that has so far eluded the best medical and scientific minds in the world working around the clock, is not only a practice in wild and completely unfounded speculation, but is indicative of the same kind of delusional self-aggrandizing behavior that underlies the defendant’s conduct in the commission of the instant offense.”

It's also suggested if he did find a cure, he would use it to "enrich himself to the maximum extent possible, including by concealing his work or declining to provide such a cure to others unless he were paid an exorbitant sum."

See original story below.

Convicted felon Martin Shkreli, who is known for raising the price of the drug Daraprim from less than $15 to $750, is trying to convince the powers that be to let him out of prison so that he can find a cure to the coronavirus pandemic that is impacting the world. 

The "Pharma Bro" posted an 11-page paper outlining his plan to come up with a cure for COVID-19. In the document, Shkreli called the biopharmaceutical industry's efforts to fight COVID-19 "inadequate." The paper, which was co-authored with 4 others, is titled "In silico screening for potential COVID-19 beta-coronavirus non-nucleoside RdRp inhibitors." Head here to take a look at it. 

Shkreli is asking to be let out of prison for 3 months so that he can get to work on researching the disease. "I am asking for a brief furlough (3 months) to assist in research work on COVID-19," he said in the paper. "Being released to the post-COVID world is no solace to even the incarcerated."

Shkreli also said that he's "one of the few executives experienced in ALL aspects of drug development from molecule creation and hypothesis generation, to preclinical assessments and clinical trial design/target engagement demonstration, and manufacturing/synthesis and global logistics and deployment of medicines." If he does come up with a hypothetical cure, Shkreli  insists that he doesn't "expect to profit in any way." 

Shkreli, who's 37, was convicted of securities fraud and sentenced to seven years in federal prison back in 2018. He's serving his time at Pennsylvania's FCC Allenwood.

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