In the midst of everything else going on across the country and here in Ohio, the Department of Justice continued pursuing justice against Purdue Pharma, which is a drug manufacturer. The drug in question is OxyContin, one of the drugs at the center of the country’s opioid epidemic. Recently, the DOJ filed a claim in the company’s bankruptcy for a total of $13 billion in penalties connected to the drug manufacturer’s part in this crisis.
Purdue filed for bankruptcy in the wake of no less than 2,600 lawsuits claiming that the company contributed to the opioid crisis that has ruined and taken many lives here in Ohio and across the country. These claims did not go unnoticed by the DOJ. Reports indicate that the drug manufacturer encouraged the prescription of illegal opioid, ostensibly to increase its profits.
Federal prosecutors are considering filing criminal charges against the company for conspiracy, drug safety law offenses and anti-kickback violations. At the same time, a civil investigation is underway that stems from allegations that the company defrauded government health care programs. Of course, the company and its owners deny these allegations even as they attempt to negotiate resolutions to the investigations and other legal matters.
What does this mean for victims of the opioid epidemic? Only time will tell. However, it does represent progress in a situation that has touched many lives. Victims continue to come forward to demand justice and restitution for the damage done to their lives and their families. Those who want to come forward may benefit from consulting with an attorney regarding their rights and legal options.