26 Jan 2012

Head of breast implant company arrested

10:28 pm on 26 January 2012

Police in France have arrested Jean-Claude Mas, the founder of the French company at the heart of an international breast implant scandal.

A police source says Mr Mas was arrested at his home in southern France, and an executive from his company Poly Implant Prothese (PIP), was also detained.

PIP closed down in March 2010 after regulators discovered it was using a non-medical grade silicon manufactured for use in mattresses - in place of specialist medical materials.

Some 300,000 of the PIP implants were sold in 65 countries over the past 12 years.

The French government - along with those in Germany, the Czech Republic and Venezuela - advised women with PIP implants to have them removed.

Medsafe, which administers the medical device database in New Zealand, says the implants are not marketed in this country and are not on the database.