Teva Pharmaceuticals USA is Last Remaining NYS Defendant in Trial
AG James Has Already Negotiated Up to $1.7 Billion for New York From Different Opioid Manufacturers and Distributors
New York Attorney General Letitia James today released the following statement after New York state concluded its opioid trial in Suffolk County State Supreme Court against the final remaining New York state defendant not currently in bankruptcy — Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. and its affiliates:
“Today marks an important milestone as we conclude the trial against the last remaining defendant in our opioids trial — Teva Pharmaceuticals USA.
“More than two years ago, I made a promise that we would hold opioid manufacturers and distributors accountable for the deaths and the suffering caused by an epidemic that they helped fuel. And, one-by-one, we have done just that.
“We have already secured up to $1.7 billion from the various defendants we initially sued, and that figure may grow.
“While no amount of money will ever compensate for the human suffering, the addiction, or the lives lost due to opioid abuse, this money will be essential in helping every corner of the state — from the North Country to Western New York, from the Southern Tier to Long Island, and up and down the Hudson — recover from this epidemic.
“Today, I am left thinking about all those families that will never be whole again. For everyone who lost their life. For every parent who will never hold their child again. For every community that’s been devastated. But, today, we turn the tide.
“I am also eternally grateful to our trial team and every other member of the office that put time into this vitally important case."
In March 2019, Attorney General James filed the nation’s most extensive lawsuit to hold accountable the various manufacturers and distributors responsible for the opioid epidemic. The manufacturers named in the complaint included Purdue Pharma and its affiliates, as well as members of the Sackler Family (owners of Purdue) and trusts they control; Janssen Pharmaceuticals and its affiliates (including its parent company Johnson & Johnson); Mallinckrodt LLC and its affiliates; Endo Health Solutions and its affiliates; Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. and its affiliates; and Allergan Finance, LLC and its affiliates. The distributors named in the complaint were McKesson Corporation, Cardinal Health Inc., Amerisource Bergen Drug Corporation, and Rochester Drug Cooperative Inc.
Last week, an agreement with Allergan was reached that will deliver up to $200 million to New York state and Nassau and Suffolk counties for opioid abatement, as well as make enforceable a bar that stops Allergan and all of its subsidiaries, predecessors, and successors from selling opioids in New York and acknowledges Allergan’s prior exit from the opioid business.
Also, in September, the bankruptcy court in Purdue confirmed a $4.5 billion plan — at least $200 million of which will be earmarked for New York — from the Sackler family and foundations that they control, will end the Sacklers’ ability to manufacture opioids ever again, and will shut down Purdue Pharma.
The deals with Johnson & Johnson, McKesson, Cardinal Health, and Amerisource Bergen have a global value of approximately $26 billion.
The cases against Mallinckrodt and Rochester Drug Cooperative are now moving separately through U.S. Bankruptcy Court.
Pursuant to the new law establishing the opioid settlement fund, all funds collected by the state from opioid settlements or litigation victories will be allocated specifically for abatement efforts in communities devastated by the opioid epidemic and will not go towards the state’s general fund.