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Four years in prison for faulty PIP implants founder

A court in Marseille sentenced Jean-Claude Mas, the head of a French company accused of selling 300,000 faulty breast implants, to four years in prison.

He was accused of aggravated fraud for using industrial-grade silicone in the implants.

Mr Mas was also fined 75,000 euros (£63,000) by the court.

PIP implants Credit: Andrew Milligan/PA Wire

It is thought around 300,000 women were sold faulty breast implants, before the company went into liquidation in 2011.

47,000 British women had implants made by the company.

Read: Background to the PIP breast implant scandal

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Background to the PIP breast implant scandal

  • Poly Implant Prothèse (PIP) was founded by Jean-Claude Mas in 1991
  • Before the company went into liquidation in 2011, it is thought around 300,000 women were sold faulty breast implants.
  • Concerns were first raised in France over PIP's high rupture rate in 2009
  • In 2010, France suspended the marketing, distribution, export and use of PIP implants
  • The French government said it recommended all women with the implants to have them removed in late 2011
  • A review ordered by the Health Secretary found that PIP implants were more likely to rupture or leak
  • Mas offered an apology on April 24, 2013, for the implants, saying: "I apologise to the plantiffs for the gel used by PIP since 1992."

Information from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency

Judgement expected in PIP breast implant trial

A court in Marseille is expected to deliver its verdict today in the case against Jean-Claude Mas - the head of a French company accused of selling 300,000 faulty PIP breast implants.

PIP founder Jean-Claude Mas (C) is surrounded by policemen as he arrives at the courthouse in Marseille at an previous hearing. Credit: REUTERS/Philippe Laurenson

Mas, along with other former bosses at Poly Implant Prothese (PIP), is accused of aggravated fraud for using industrial-grade silicone in the implants.

An estimated 300,000 women have been given the implants worldwide, including around 47,000 in the UK. French authorities took all the implants off the market in March 2010 after concerns were raised.

Health authorities in France and elsewhere have stressed that PIP's products carry no proven link to cancer, but surgeons report that they have abnormally high rupture rates.

PIP breast implants subjected to chemical analysis

A review last year by NHS medical director, Professor Sir Bruce Keogh, concluded the PIP breast implants were not toxic or carcinogenic.

Today's European study said the implants have not been associated with higher risks of cancer.

It added: "Laboratory tests on PIP implants have been negative for cytotoxicity and genotoxicity."

The study said PIP implants have been subjected to chemical analysis "in an effort to find organic and inorganic compounds (including heavy metals) that may be potentially toxic, but none have been found even at very low levels".

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British PIP patient: 'Bring those responsible to justice'

by - Consumer Editor

Today UK PIP implant patient Jan Spivey told the court: "within two years of having the implants I had severe symptoms, lost use of my left arm and shoulder and suffered severe inflammatory reactions."

At times she cried during evidence and said " the effect has been trauma for me, my friends and family....it was a terror....I was terrified I feel I have been poisoned"

She told the court she had spent time in hospital saying "my symptoms included change in breast shape and breast deflation....also sub tissue lumps"

In conclusion she said " I have to appeal to you to bring all those responsible for terrorising so many women, bring them to justice."

Background to the PIP breast implant scandal

The head of the French company that is accused of selling 300,000 faulty breast implants has gone on trial.

Here is a look back at the breast implant scandal:

  • Poly Implant Prothèse (PIP) was founded by Jean-Claude Mas in 1991.
  • Before the company went into liquidation in 2011, it is thought around 300,000 women were sold faulty breast implants.
  • Concerns were first raised in France over PIP's high rupture rate in 2009.
  • In 2010, France suspended the marketing, distribution, export and use of PIP implants.
  • The French government said it recommended all women with the implants to have them removed in late 2011.
  • A review ordered by the Health Secretary found that PIP implants were more likely to rupture or leak.
  • Mas offered an apology on April 24, 2013, for the implants, saying: "I apologise to the plantiffs for the gel used by PIP since 1992."
  • The Frenchman and four PIP executives face aggravated fraud charges and face five years each in prison.

Information from the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency.

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