[Video: Anthony Tabasso, president and CEO of KVK-Tech, announces agreement to acquire the Lockheed Martin campus in Newtown.]

[From Philadelphia Inquirer - May 5, 2022]

KVK, far from embracing the community, has clashed with local, federal and regional officials over its mobile trailers, parking, worker safety and its main plant’s waste water.


In 2015, when the small but fast-growing drug company KVK Tech Inc. began preparing to buy the vast Lockheed Martin site in Newtown Township, there was soaring hope in the community that the dynamic generic firm could restore the modern 52-acre corporate campus to glory. The town faced a massive loss of tax revenue as Lockheed, the big defense contractor that once employed 1,200, was shutting down.


[Supervisors' questions at the time] didn’t stop KVK Tech from buying the campus for $12.5 million. But seven years later… Under KVK, the Lockheed site -- which local officials once hoped would anchor a high-tech corridor -- is barely used with nearly empty parking lots.


The FDA’s concerns with Vepuri go back decades, spanning allegations over unapproved drug ingredients and repeated findings of flawed drug-manufacturing processes that could threaten public health.


Last summer, federal agents swarmed over KVK facilities in Newtown as part of a six-year global investigation. The agents said they carted out 30 terabytes of digital information and 500 boxes of company records. [Read “Federal Agents With Help From the Newtown Township Police Department Raid KVK Tech Locations at the Crack of Dawn!”; https://sco.lt/8FzMMS]


The executives each face a maximum possible sentence of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. KVK Tech, which remains a prominent generic drug maker, could be fined up to $4 million.


And Murty Vepuri -- the firm’s “de facto” owner, the government says -- faces a federal criminal charge that he conspired to undermine the Food and Drug Administration by using an unapproved drug ingredient. If convicted, Vepuri could be fined, imprisoned and barred from the drug industry, the government says.


John Mack, vice chair of the Newtown Township board of supervisors, has posted concerns online about KVK Tech for several years.


  • “FDA Orders KVK Tech To Hire An Outside Consultant To Bring Its Laboratory Practices Up to Agency Expectations!”; http://sco.lt/8qbsn2
  • “KVK Tech - Located in Newtown Township - is #7 Among the TOP TEN Biggest Rx Opioid Manufacturers! According to DEA Database”; http://sco.lt/5n2yoq
  • “FDA to Determine if Oxymorphone, Produced by KVK Tech in Newtown, is More Likely to Be Abused Than Other Opioids”; http://sco.lt/9KUNFp


When campaigning in 2017, [Mack] spoke out against the company’s request for a zoning variance at its headquarters plant that would add parking.* “You have to prove you have a hardship [for a variance],” Mack said. “I said they did not have a hardship” because they had so much room at the Lockheed plant on the Newtown Bypass. The variance was approved.


Separately, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the Newtown facilities for airborne narcotic dust from drugs made by the company. Employees had elevated levels of narcotics in their blood, company managers told federal agents, according to court documents.


”This is not because of anything the employees are doing improperly,” wrote Aaron McKivigan, special agent of the U.S. Department of Labor in a report to OSHA filed with the court, “but because of prolonged exposure to the particulate matter in the drug manufacturing process without having proper PPE or ventilation.”