OxyContin maker files for bankruptcy faced with over 2,000 lawsuits over opioid epidemic
Bottles of prescription painkiller OxyContin, 40mg pills, made by Purdue Pharma L.D. sit on a shelf at a local pharmacy, in Provo, Utah, U.S., April 25, 2017. © REUTERS/George Frey
The company filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy in White Plains, New York on Sunday evening, as part of its efforts to finalize a settlement with state and local governments, which sued the pharmaceutical giant en mass for its role in the nation’s deadly opioid crisis.
The much-anticipated filing aims to help the company to shield itself from 2,600 lawsuits, including from 26 states.
“This settlement framework avoids wasting hundreds of millions of dollars and years on protracted litigation,” Steve Miller, chairman of Purdue’s board of directors, said, adding that the company will keep on working with plaintiff representatives to thrash out the settlement agreement “as quickly as possible.”
Numerous plaintiffs accused the company of making huge profits from selling the painkiller, first introduced in 1996, while downplaying its addictive qualities, thus fueling the US opioid crisis, which has seen over 200,000 people dying as result of overdoses with prescription drugs from 1999 to 2017.
The bankruptcy announcement comes several days after the Sackler family behind the controversial drug maker reached a tentative multi-billion-dollar settlement with 23 states, which envisages it paying the sum over seven years while not admitting guilt.
Overall, Purdue is set to fork out nearly $12 billion to state and local authorities under the deal, including $3 billion that would come directly from the Sacklers, who would also give up the control of the company.
The proposed settlement requires the company to file for bankruptcy, which it ultimately did on Sunday. Not everybody is, however, on board, with some states arguing that the company must also offset the costs of treatment and incarceration.
Half of the states have not yet signed on to the deal, and several states, including New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Wisconsin, have rejected it outright, vowing to push for the litigation to go forward.
There have been concerns that the billionaire family, faced with mounting lawsuits, could attempt to hide theirs assets from the court. On Friday, New York’s attorney general uncovered over $1 billion in wire transfers routed through several Swiss banks by the family, accusing them of trying to “shield their financial misconduct.”
(TLB) published this article from RT-USA News with our appreciation for the coverage.
Stay tuned to …
The Liberty Beacon Project is now expanding at a near exponential rate, and for this we are grateful and excited! But we must also be practical. For 7 years we have not asked for any donations, and have built this project with our own funds as we grew. We are now experiencing ever increasing growing pains due to the large number of websites and projects we represent. So we have just installed donation buttons on our websites and ask that you consider this when you visit them. Nothing is too small. We thank you for all your support and your considerations … (TLB)
Comment Policy: As a privately owned web site, we reserve the right to remove comments that contain spam, advertising, vulgarity, threats of violence, racism, or personal/abusive attacks on other users. This also applies to trolling, the use of more than one alias, or just intentional mischief. Enforcement of this policy is at the discretion of this websites administrators. Repeat offenders may be blocked or permanently banned without prior warning.
Disclaimer: TLB websites contain copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to our readers under the provisions of “fair use” in an effort to advance a better understanding of political, health, economic and social issues. The material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving it for research and educational purposes. If you wish to use copyrighted material for purposes other than “fair use” you must request permission from the copyright owner.
Disclaimer: The information and opinions shared are for informational purposes only including, but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material are not intended as medical advice or instruction. Nothing mentioned is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.