A news release from the US DoJ on 24 November advised that opioid manufacturer Purdue Pharma LP has pleaded guilty in federal court in Newark, New Jersey, to conspiracies to defraud the UUS and violate the anti-kickback statute. It is said that Purdue admitted that it marketed and sold its dangerous opioid products to healthcare providers, even though it had reason to believe those providers were diverting them to abusers. Purdue agreed to the imposition of the largest penalties ever levied against a pharmaceutical manufacturer, including a criminal fine of $3.544 billion and an additional $2 billion in criminal forfeiture. For the $2 billion forfeiture, the company will pay $225 million within 3 business days following the entry of a judgment of conviction in accordance with the Plea Agreement. The DoJ is willing to credit the value conferred by the company to state and local governments under the department’s anti-piling on and coordination policy if certain conditions are met. Purdue has also agreed to a civil settlement that provides the US with an allowed, unsubordinated, general unsecured bankruptcy claim for recovery of $2.8 billion to resolve its civil liability under the False Claims Act. Separately, the Sackler family has agreed to pay $225 million in damages to resolve its civil False Claims Act liability.
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