NC Attorney General targets family behind OxyContin in lawsuit

Steve Daniels Image
Wednesday, September 18, 2019

North Carolina's attorney general is the latest to file a lawsuit against the family that owns OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma as part of an effort to address the opioid epidemic.

Purdue Pharma files for bankruptcy as part of opioid crisis lawsuits

A lawsuit filed Tuesday in North Carolina court names eight members of the Sackler family as defendants.

North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein alleged that the family members directed the company to deceptively market OxyContin while making billions of dollars in profits for themselves.

The suit names Richard Sackler, Mortimer Sackler, Jonathan Sackler, Kathe Sackler, Ilene Sackler Lefcourt, Beverly Sackler, Theresa Sackler, and David Sackler.

"The Sackler family helped create and fuel the opioid crisis - a crisis that is leaving a trail of death and destruction in its wake," Stein said in a statement. "Too many North Carolinians have died, too many families have been torn apart, and too many communities are shattered."

North Carolina previously sued the company itself, and a number of other states have also sued the family.

"We have been negotiating with Purdue and the Sacklers for months, but so far, the Sacklers have not been willing to put meaningful skin in the game to help clean up the mess they've helped create," said Stein. "They've been preparing for this moment for years - extracting billions out of Purdue and stuffing it into their own coffers."

The company has filed for bankruptcy and is working on a multibillion-dollar settlement to resolve thousands of lawsuits.

Representatives for the Sackler family didn't immediately respond to an email from the Associated Press asking for comment about the North Carolina lawsuit.

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