An Oklahoma judge has found Johnson & Johnson’s pharmaceutical subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals guilty of contributing to the opioid crisis in the state.
The judge ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay the state $572 million according to an NBC News article about the ruling. This is a significant verdict, as this trial was the first of its kind to be heard involving the opioid crisis.
Aggressive Tactics by Johnson & Johnson
Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter argued that the company created a “public nuisance” by using extreme marketing tactics to push their prescription painkillers to the medical community, and glossing over the risk of addiction. As a result, an epidemic has occurred nationally, with Oklahoma experiencing over 6,000 deaths as a result of the crisis.
This ruling can potentially impact how other state’s cases against pharmaceutical companies over the opioid epidemic will be viewed going forward. With this ruling, there is a potential for judges to want to side with states over pharmaceutical companies when determining who is at fault.
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