New York Hits Opioid Maker Family With Massive Suit

CBS News reports:

New York state prosecutors on Thursday filed a lawsuit against Purdue Pharma and the family that owns the OxyContin-maker, alleging they fraudulently transferred funds out of the company. The complaint also adds charges previously filed against other companies that made and distributed opioids.

“We found that pharmaceutical manufacturers and distributors engaged in years of deceptive marketing about the risks of opioids and failed to exercise their basic duty to report suspicious behavior, leading to the crisis we are living with today,” New York Attorney General Letitia James [photo] said in statement.

“As the Sackler Family and the other defendants grew richer, New Yorkers’ health grew poorer and our state was left to foot the bill.”

STAT News reports:

The state, which averages nine opioid-related deaths per day, amended an existing lawsuit against pill maker Purdue Pharma to add members of its controlling Sackler family as defendants.

The state also added as defendants five other companies that produce opioid painkillers and, in what New York Attorney General Letitia James called a novelty, four drug distributors. “This is an extensive lawsuit that leaves no stone unturned,” James, a Democrat, said at a news conference.

The lawsuit seeks penalties and damages that could add up to tens of millions of dollars and a dedicated fund to curb the opioid epidemic. It also seeks to have the companies stripped of their licenses and barred from marketing and distributing painkillers in New York until they abide by strict safeguards.