This request, unprecedented in terms of deception, leads to much heavier requisitions than the fine of 2.7 million euros pronounced at first instance against the pharmaceutical laboratory, or even the total fine of about 10 million euros that had been requested at this first trial.

To quantify their claim, the prosecution representatives estimated at 153 million euros the net profit generated by Servier on worldwide sales of Mediator during the prevention period (1994-2009), to which they added the research and development expenses related to this product, considering that the studies launched on the Mediator were intended to "try to save the drug", and not real research.

They also called for wide publicity for a possible conviction of France's second-largest pharmaceutical group, including front page inserts in national newspapers, scientific publications and prime-time television spots.

Against Jean-Michel Seta, former CEO of Servier and the only natural person accused in this appeal trial, the prosecution has asked for five years in prison, including two years firm, convertible with an electronic bracelet, and a fine of 200,000 euros.

At first instance, in March 2021, he was sentenced to four years in prison suspended and a fine of 90,600 euros.

© 2023 AFP