from the if-it's-non-addicting,-give-it-to-every-exec-for-a-month dept.
The mega-rich family behind the OxyContin-maker Purdue Pharma is back to selling its highly addictive pain-killer with underhanded tactics and deceptive advertising—this time in China, via its international company, Mundipharma. That’s all according to a searing new investigation by the Associated Press.
The Sackler family, which owns both Purdue and Mundipharma, is embroiled in litigation in the United States over its alleged role in sparking the country’s epidemic of opioid abuse and overdoses. Thousands of plaintiffs—many state and local governments—claim that Purdue and the Sacklers misled patients, doctors, and regulators on the addictiveness of their drugs, aggressively marketed them, and wooed doctors into over-prescribing them.
Based on documents and interviews with multiple Mundipharma representatives in China, the AP investigation found that reps were at times posing as doctors, providing debunked information that its long-acting opioids are safe and less addictive, and even illegally copying private medical records of patients to inform sales tactics.
[...]Mundipharma, meanwhile, is still hiring in China.
The AP story linked above is in-depth and well worth reading. See also: HuffPost.
OxyContin Maker Purdue Pharma to Plead Guilty to Three Criminal Charges
OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma to plead guilty to 3 criminal charges as part of an $8 billion-plus settlement
WASHINGTON (AP) — Purdue Pharma, the company that makes OxyContin, the powerful prescription painkiller that experts say helped touch off an epidemic, will plead guilty to three federal criminal charges as part of a settlement of more than $8 billion, Justice Department officials told The Associated Press.
The company will plead guilty to a criminal information being filed Wednesday in federal court in New Jersey to three counts, including conspiracy to defraud the United States and violating federal anti-kickback laws, the officials said.
The deal does not release any of the company's executives or owners — members of the wealthy Sackler family — from criminal liability. A criminal investigation is ongoing.
The officials were not authorized to discuss the investigation publicly and spoke on condition of anonymity.
Guilty pleas? You seldom see that - these corporates always seem to get away with weasel word statements to the effect, "We acknowledge no wrongdoing blah blah blah . . . "
Purdue Pharma Pleads Guilty to Opioid Crisis Charges, Will Become a Public Benefit Corporation
Purdue Pharma, the maker of OxyContin, has agreed to plead guilty to three federal criminal charges for its role in creating the nation's opioid crisis and will pay more than $8 billion and close down the company.
The money will go to opioid treatment and abatement programs. The privately held company has agreed to pay a $3.5 billion fine as well as forfeit an additional $2 billion in past profits, in addition to the $2.8 billion it agreed to pay in civil liability.
"Purdue Pharma actively thwarted the United States' efforts to ensure compliance and prevent diversion," said Drug Enforcement Administration Assistant Administrator Tim McDermott. "The devastating ripple effect of Purdue's actions left lives lost and others addicted."
The company doesn't have $8 billion in cash available to pay the fines. So Purdue will be dissolved as part of the settlement, and its assets will be used to create a new "public benefit company" controlled by a trust or similar entity designed for the benefit of the American public. The Justice Department said it will function entirely in the public interest rather than to maximize profits. Its future earnings will go to paying the fines and penalties, which in turn will be used to combat the opioid crisis.
That new company will continue to produce painkillers such as OxyContin, as well as drugs to deal with opioid overdose. Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen, who announced the settlement, defended the plans for the new company to continue to sell that drug, saying there are legitimate uses for painkillers such as OxyContin.
City of Everett, Washington Sues OxyContin Maker Purdue Pharma
South Carolina Sues OxyContin Maker Purdue
Purdue Pharma to Cut Sales Force, Stop Marketing Opioids to Doctors
Colorado Attorney General Sues Purdue Pharma
OxyContin Maker Purdue Pharma May File for Bankruptcy to Disrupt Lawsuits
After Pushing Addictive OxyContin, Purdue Now Pursuing Overdose Antidote
Purdue Pharma to Pay $270 Million Settlement to Oklahoma
Report Finds that Purdue Pharma Infiltrated WHO, Manipulated Opioid Policies to Boost Sales
Opioid Talks Fail, Purdue Bankruptcy Filing Expected
Makers of OxiCotin, Purdue Pharma, Files Reorganization Chapter 11 "Bankrupty"
Sacklers Threaten to Scrap Opioid Deal If They Aren't Shielded From Lawsuits
Report: Sacklers Using Fake Doctors, False Marketing to Sell OxyContin in China
OxyContin Maker Purdue Pharma LP Said to be Brokering Plea Deal in Criminal Probe