Ontario government fines Costco $7 million after illegal kickbacks

Ontario’s government has fined Costco more than $7 million after an investigation into illegal kickbacks at 29 pharmacies in warehouses across the province.

The Ontario Ministry of Health announced Friday that it would be penalizing CWC Pharmacies (Ontario) Ltd. after it found that the company received illegal advertising payments before August 2015.

The government says the company approached the ministry for confirmation on the legality of the payments, which Costco voluntarily stopped receiving until the completion of the ministry’s review.

The inspection revealed that Cosctco received $7.25 million for advertising services that the ministry says violate its terms for accepting rebates.

According to the ministry, the Ontario government prohibits the operator of a pharmacy from accepting rebates from a drug manufacturer that has a product listed on the province’s drug database.

The ministry says the company co-operated with all aspects of the investigation and it agreed to make the rebate payment.

CWC Ontario is a ”wholly owned subsidiary” of Costco Wholesale Canada Ltd., according to the Costco Pharmacy website.

A company spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Just Posted

Country star Gord Bamford and The Reklaws perform free Games concert Friday

Show starts at 6:30 p.m. in heated dome off Celebration Plaza in downtown Red Deer

U.S. franchisee files suit against Tim Hortons, alleging price gouging

Weeks after achieving a breakthrough in two class-action lawsuits with restive Canadian… Continue reading

Japanese spacecraft to attempt landing on distant asteroid

TOKYO — A Japanese spacecraft began its approach Thursday toward a distant… Continue reading

Baby boom for endangered right whales offer researchers a glimmer of hope

After years of increasingly bad news, there’s a glimmer of hope for… Continue reading

Proposed edible pot rules are wasteful, would leave products tasteless: critics

VANCOUVER — Canada’s proposed edible pot regulations would result in tasteless products… Continue reading

Gaudreau snaps goal drought to help Flames double up Islanders 4-2

CALGARY — The drought is over for Johnny Gaudreau. Gaudreau’s first goal… Continue reading

Federal government set to develop code of conduct for sport in Canada

OTTAWA — The federal government is developing a code of conduct for… Continue reading

Jay Baruchel has trained the dragon, now he’s letting go with ‘The Hidden World’

TORONTO — The first time actor Jay Baruchel stepped into a recording… Continue reading

Hockey ref says AC/DC support is giving him motivation in Alzheimer’s fundraiser

Enthusiastic AC/DC fan Steve McNeil says he’s feeling inspired to push even… Continue reading

Gardening: What are you planting in 2019?

What’s new in plants for 2019? Checking catalogues, greenhouses and stores will… Continue reading

Opinion: I spy another energy hypocrite

Talk about biting the hand that feeds you. The mittens provided to… Continue reading

Canada’s bobsleigh team races World Cup on Calgary home track facing closure

CALGARY — Canada’s skeleton and bobsled teams will race a World Cup… Continue reading

Italy becomes ninth international football league to join forces with CFL

TORONTO — Add Italy to the growing list of international football federations… Continue reading

Most Read