DAVE ROSS

Washington Attorney General to appeal bankruptcy plan for makers of OxyContin

Sep 2, 2021, 9:56 AM | Updated: 11:14 am
Purdue, OxyContin...
In this file photo, fake pill bottles with messages about OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma are displayed during a protest outside the courthouse where the bankruptcy of the company is taking place in White Plains, N.Y. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)
(AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson will appeal a federal judge’s plan to settle thousands of lawsuits against OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma.

Seattle Children’s eliminates opioids from Bellevue surgery center

Ferguson says the bankruptcy plan is inadequate and that a bankruptcy court does not have the authority to prevent attorneys general from enforcing state law, including the decision to pursue the company’s owners, the Sackler family, for their illegal conduct.

“The judge is saying nobody, no individual, no state attorney general, can sue the Sackler family civilly for their involvement in the opioid epidemic and that harm that they caused. That’s outrageous, that’s buying justice, and that’s not how it works,” Ferguson said on Seattle’s Morning News.

Sackler family members serve on the board of directors, make decisions, and are involved in the day-to-day operations, Ferguson explained. If someone could take them to trial, he says they would face significant legal and financial exposure.

“I’m extremely dissatisfied with the resolution that is, frankly, legally and morally bankrupt,” he added.

Purdue’s bankruptcy plan requires the Sackler family pay $4.3 billion dollars over nine years to a group of states, municipalities, and private plaintiffs, including to Washington, that sued or have claims against the company. The plan also includes a “lifetime legal shield” for the Sackler family, as explained in the release from the Attorney General’s office.

“We’ve already filed our notice of appeal, we did that as soon as the judge was done speaking. Connecticut, which is where Purdue Pharmaceutical is headquartered, is joining with us. This case, I think, has a very good case of ending up at the U.S. Supreme Court,” Ferguson said.

Ferguson says the order is insulting to victims of the opioid epidemic who had no voice in these proceedings.

Washington is one of 48 states that sued Purdue Pharma for fueling the opioid epidemic. The state’s lawsuit asserts that the company ran a massive deceptive marketing campaign to convince doctors and the public that OxyContin is effective for treating chronic pain and has a low risk of addiction, without evidence to support its claims.

The KIRO Radio Newsdesk contributed to this report.

Listen to Seattle’s Morning News weekday mornings from 5 – 9 a.m. on KIRO Radio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

Dave Ross on KIRO Radio 97.3 FM
  • listen to dave rossTune in to KIRO Radio weekdays at 5am for Dave Ross on Seattle's Morning News.

Dave's Commentary

Dave Ross

unemployment...
Dave Ross

Ross: The real reason people don’t want to return to work

The extra unemployment benefits were cut off in September and most states elected not to continue them. Yet, millions of workers are still holding out.
2 days ago
Shatner, space...
Dave Ross

Ross: Shatner’s emotional response over trip to space exactly what we needed to hear

Space travel is a trip that every billionaire who thinks he’s a master of the universe needs to take as soon as possible.
3 days ago
Airlines...
Dave Ross

Ross: Choosing the fully-vaccinated airline that makes you feel safest

Two airlines – Southwest and American –both based in Texas, have decided to stick with their plans to require employees to get vaccinated.
4 days ago
Jan. 6, US Capitol...
MyNorthwest Staff

Committee investigating Jan. 6 pushes for details from White House aides

Washington Post's David Fahrenthold discusses the investigation into Jan. 6, with subpoenas now sent to some of former President Trump's closest aides.
5 days ago
TikTok...
Dave Ross

Ross: Down the rabbit hole as TikTok challenges take on life of their own

Just remember kids, you’re responsible for your conduct no matter what website put you up to it, whether it's TikTok or somewhere else.
5 days ago
Merck's...
MyNorthwest Staff

Mercer Island MD: New accessible COVID treatment is ‘necessary step’

A new COVID-19 treatment is on the horizon. Merck’s new COVID treatment — available in pill form — has been submitted to the FDA.
6 days ago

Sponsored Articles

...

How to Have a Stress-Free Real Estate Experience

The real estate industry has adapted and sellers are taking full advantage of new real estate models. One of which is Every Door Real Estate.
...
IQ Air

How Poor Air Quality Is Affecting Our Future Athletes

You cannot control your child’s breathing environment 100% of the time, but you can make a huge impact.
...
Swedish Health Services

Special Coverage: National Prostate Cancer Awareness Month

There are a wide variety of treatment options available for men with prostate cancer. The most technologically advanced treatment option in the Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform.
...
Marysville Police Department

Police Opportunities in a Growing, Supportive Washington Community

Marysville PD is looking for both lateral and entry level officers. Begin or continue your career in law enforcement for a growing, supportive community.
...
Comcast

Small, Minority-Owned Businesses in King County and Pierce County Can Now Apply For $10,000 Relief Grants Through Comcast RISE

Businesses in King County and Pierce County can apply beginning on October 1, 2021, at www.ComcastRISE.com for a chance to receive a $10,000 relief grant.
Courtesy of JWatch Photography....
Experience Anacortes

Summer Fun Activities in Anacortes

With minimal travel time required and every activity under the sun, Anacortes is the perfect vacation spot for all ages.
Washington Attorney General to appeal bankruptcy plan for makers of OxyContin