ALBANY – Dubbing it an “industry wide conspiracy,” New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday he will be filing a lawsuit for the over prescription of opioids that he says has defrauded New Yorkers out of billions of dollars.
The Governor says the state’s Department of Financial Services is gathering evidence for a lawsuit that extends beyond the drug makers to the drug distributors and pharmacies.
Cuomo says the cost of the overuse of the opioids was passed on to insurance premium holders who hiked their rates.
“I’ve seen a number of schemes and frauds, but the opioid scheme is as diabolical, as brazen, as obnoxious and as offensive as anything I’ve seen,” Governor Cuomo said. “These drug companies knew what they were doing. It was not accidental – it was an industry-wide conspiracy. The damage they have caused has been immeasurable – it has cost thousands of human lives and billions of dollars, and they have gotten away with it for decades. These drug companies are not going to get away with murder, and we are taking a series of actions to ensure that they don’t.”
Major pharmacuetical companies like Purdue Pharma, which manufactured the popular opioid OxyContin, have gotten away with it for decades, Cuomo explained.