Romanian authorities are investigating 11 pharma companies under suspicion of bribing doctors to prescribe cancer drugs in the country.

Among these companies was Roche, which has confirmed that its offices were searched and that it is cooperating fully with the authorities.

In a statement, the Romanian National Anti-corruption Directorate (DNA) said: "The file is related to suspicions of corruption offences regarding the manner in which a series of medicines were prescribed and purchased by certain health institutions and medical doctors in Romania.”

It recently emerged that a whistleblower had alleged GlaxoSmithKline employees had bribed doctors in the country. Reuters – who broke the GSK story – said that this is separate to the current case.

Several hospitals and clinics were also searched. The DNA said that it visited a total of 61 premises across the country on Tuesday.