State AG settles lawsuit against Purdue Pharma for $4.5 billion
New York Attorney General Letitia James on Thursday announced a $4.5 billion settlement in the lawsuit against Purdue Pharma.
The settlement resolves a three-year legal battle against the Sackler family and its company Purdue Pharma for its role in fueling the opioid crisis.
In 2018, James along with attorneys general from other states filed a lawsuit that alleged Purdue Pharma, the manufacturer of Oxycontin, and company executives lied about the addictive nature of the drugs.
"They took advantage of countless individuals and as a result made billions of dollars," says James. "They then turned around and blamed the victims."
The $4.5 billion agreement shuts down Purdue Pharma by 2024 and ends the Sackler family's ability to manufacture opioids ever again. The deal will also deliver at least $200 million to New York to fund prevention, treatment and recovery programs.
"These funds will enable us to do some real prevention work to create better access to folks who are addicted to opioids and support those folks who have struggled through a pandemic of opioid addiction that's now gone on for more than 15 years," says Dr. Jeffrey Reynolds, of Family and Children's Association.
The agreement also requires Purdue Pharma to make tens of millions of internal documents public. It's a step the attorneys general demanded as a way to hold the company accountable.