According to Global Corruption Report 2006 of Transparency International, an international NGO devoted to combatting corruption, an estimated 192,000 people died in 2001 in China because of fake drugs. 2001? That's a pretty old number for the 2006 report about 2005. Their source was the Indian pharma portal PharmaBiz.com, 18 March 2005. I googled for this research but I could only find an article of PharmaBiz.com of September 18, 2002, that said that 192,000 people died in 2001 according to the Shenzhen Evening News.
Think talcum powder, instead of antibiotics, birth control pills filled with rice flour. "Some die from toxins in counterfeit medicines, and others from infection because they are swallowing bogus pills instead of antibiotics."
But how many people died in 2005 because of faked products the report does not tell. To try make it more transparant I asked Transparancy International. They will get back to me, they promised me. So to be continued.
Download the relevant part of the report, named 'Corruption in the pharmaceutical sector'