Justice Department to File Statement of Interest in Opioid Case
The Department of Justice today announced it will be filing a Statement of Interest in a multi-district action regarding hundreds of lawsuits against opioid manufacturers and distributors.
The plaintiffs include numerous cities, municipalities, and medical institutions that have borne the costs of the prescription opioid crisis. The plaintiffs seek to recover the costs associated with providing treatment and public safety measures relating to the opioid epidemic from those who allegedly used false, deceptive, or unfair marketing practices for prescription opioid drugs.
The Justice Department will primarily argue that the federal government—through various federal health programs and law enforcement efforts—has borne substantial costs from the opioid epidemic and seeks reimbursement.
In announcing the plan to file the Statement of Interest, Attorney General Jeff Sessions provided the following statement:
“Opioid abuse is driving the deadliest drug crisis in American history. It has cost this nation hundreds of thousands of precious lives. It has strained our public health and law enforcement resources and bankrupted countless families across this country. President Trump and this administration have made ending this unprecedented crisis a priority, and the Department of Justice is committed to using every lawful tool at our disposal to turn the tide. We will seek to hold accountable those whose illegality has cost us billions of taxpayer dollars.”