Purdue Pharma and its owners, members of the Sackler family, have tentatively reached the first comprehensive settlement with lawyers representing thousands of municipal governments, tribes and states nationwide that are suing the pharmaceutical industry for the devastation resulting from the opioid epidemic.
The settlement is a landmark moment in the long-running effort to compel Purdue Pharma, the company whose drug is seen as an early driver of the crisis, and its owners, the Sacklers, to have their day of reckoning for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of people from overdoses and the calamitous systemic costs.
In recent weeks, perhaps in anticipation of legal fortresses built by the Sacklers to guard their fortune, which Forbes estimated to be about $13 billion , more states, including Virginia , New Mexico and Delaware , have been filing cases against members of the family.
Some attorneys general, including those from Massachusetts, New York, and Connecticut, who have not signed on to the settlement, had been pressing the family to sell the company immediately and to discontinue manufacturing drugs for international markets.
The deconstruction and evolution of Purdue would now be presumably overseen by a bankruptcy judge and, eventually, trustees appointed to assemble a new, transparent board, which would not include any of the Sacklers.
Some states have been aggressively hunting for where the Sacklers have deposited their money, particularly the New York attorney general’s office, which recently issued 33 subpoenas , including to offshore holding companies.
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- Purdue Pharma Reaches Deal With Cities, 23 States Over Opioid CrisisWall Street Journal
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