Judge Rules Opioid Lawsuit Can Move Forward

Tuesday, December 5th 2017, 8:46 pm

A Cleveland County district court judge has ruled the State Attorney General’s Office can go forward with a lawsuit against more than a dozen pharmaceutical companies. That suit could be worth billions to the state of Oklahoma.

The lawsuit alleges the pharmaceutical companies lied to doctors about how addictive opioids are leading to the nations opioid epidemic.

In more than four hours of testimony, teams of attorneys for the pharmaceutical companies and the state made their points. The drug companies wanted the case tossed out, claiming doctors knew the dangers of opioid addiction. The state disagreed.

"But that's not what happened,” said Michael Burrage, Attorney for State. “What happened is a systemic campaign funded by millions of dollars of misrepresentation to these doctors."

Attorneys for the pharmaceutical companies did not want to comment.

Both sides will return next month to decide on a trial date. The state is pushing for May of 2019.

Read Related Story: Commission Battling Opiod Abuse With Few State Resources


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