HOMEWOOD, Ala. (WBRC) – A woman has been arrested and charged with practicing medicine without a license after investigators found she was importing and administering unapproved Botox.
According to the Alabama State Board of Medical Examiners, 57-year-old Albina Cherkes is a Russian woman who had been living in Irondale.
The investigation began after the FDA received an anonymous tip as well as a separate complaint from a Mountain Brook woman who experienced a negative reaction to an injection Cherkes gave her.
Officials learned the injections being administered by Cherkes were an unapproved foreign source Botox that is on an FDA import alert.
According to a detective in the case, Cherkes did not have an office but met people at their homes or third-party locations and was working out of her car. He says this was happening all over Jefferson County. He says she worked largely from social media and made her appointments through Facebook.
Cherkes was arrested by Homewood Police for illegally importing, dispensing and injecting unapproved foreign source Botox while falsely representing herself as a licensed dermatologist.
“The FDA protects the public’s health by ensuring, among other things, that ‘Botox-like’ products are safe and effective for their intended uses,” said Special Agent in Charge Justin C. Fielder, FDA Office of Criminal Investigations Miami Field Office. “We are fully committed to bringing to justice those who subvert FDA’s requirements and place unsuspecting American consumers at risk of serious harm by using unapproved and potentially unsafe products.”
“Those who practice medicine without a license are not only breaking the law, they are a threat to people’s lives. The Alabama Board of Medical Examiners will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to protect people from the unlawful and fraudulent practice of medicine in this state,” said William Perkins, Executive Director of the Alabama Board of Medical Examiners.
The investigation was carried out by investigators with the U.S. Secret Service, Homewood Police Department, Mountain Brook Police Department, Hoover Police Department, Alabaster Police Department, Walmart Global Investigations, Hueytown Police Department, and the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office.
CLICK HERE TO GET THE WBRC FOX6 NEWS APP
Subscribe to our WBRC newsletter and receive the latest local news and weather straight to your email.
Copyright 2022 WBRC. All rights reserved.