- In January 2013, ‘gskwhistleblower’ anonymously sent GSK information about alleged bribery at GSK China. According to the allegations, travel budgets were used to pay doctors up to $1,680 in exchange for prescribing certain products.
- These emails were viewed by a total of 13 GSK executives, as well as the auditing firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and GSK’s CEO, Sir Andrew Witty.
- In May 2013, a sex tape involving Mark Reilly, the former GSK boss in China, was also sent to GSK.
In what has become a complex web of allegations and innuendo, it can be difficult to determine which actions were truly illegal and who is guilty of what. The investigation company hired by GSK, ChinaWhys, run by Peter Humphrey and his wife, was initially asked to investigate a smear campaign. Chinese authorities allege that ChinaWhys purchased 256 different pieces of private information at a cost of up to $300 for each bit. They were also paid approximately $35,000 up front for their services.
The suspected ‘gskwhistleblower,’ GSK’s former government affairs lead, Vivian Shu, had already been fired for allegedly falsifying her travel expenses. As of now, Humphrey and his wife have been sentenced to jail time for breaking Chinese laws -- however, they will be able to appeal the sentence. Earlier this year, Mark Reilly was arrested and charged with bribery. GSK can only hope that this is the final salvo in its strange saga in China.