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KVK Tech’s Long List of Clashes with FDA, OSHA, Local Sewer Authorities, and Newtown Township

[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!”;]


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!”;
  • “KVK Tech - Located in Newtown Township - is #7 Among the TOP TEN Biggest Rx Opioid Manufacturers! According to DEA Database”;
  • “FDA to Determine if Oxymorphone, Produced by KVK Tech in Newtown, is More Likely to Be Abused Than Other Opioids”;


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.”

johnmacknewtown's insight:

* I have suspected KVK Tech of being a bad actor for a long time. At the July 6, 2017, Zoning Hearing Board (ZHB), I objected to KVK Tech's request for zoning variances. At that hearing, representatives of KVK Tech testified under oath that the company's major selling products are opioids. Read more about that here:


At the December 12, 2018, public meeting, the Newtown Township Board of Supervisors voted 4 to 1 in favor of authorizing a law firm to file a suit against the manufacturers, promoters, and distributors of synthetic prescription Opioid medications on behalf of Newtown Township. KVK Tech was not on the list. I believe the reason for that was because of the resident and non-resident EIT income that the Township makes from KVK Tech employees. The Earned Income Tax (EIT) generated for KVK Tech for 2020 is Resident = $2,823.37 and Non Resident = $56,845.86 Total = $59,669.23

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Newtown News of Interest
These Scoops are excerpts from articles published in local newspapers and other sources that may be of interest to Newtown area residents. Please click on the "From" link to access the full original article. Any opinions and "insights" appended to these article summaries are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
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