Feroleto Law, Buffalo NY

20 States Filed Suit on Price-Fixing by Drug Firms

The Attorneys General sued pharmaceutical industry giants in a scheme to artificially inflate (a/k/a rip off the public) the prices of a diabetes, and an antibiotic drug. As a personal injury lawyer in New York, I am keenly aware of the escalation in prices for necessaryprescription medications. Accident victims without insurance it gouged directly, and the public is harmed by greater insurance premiums.

New York’s Atty. Gen., Eric Schneiderman stated the charges were part of an investigation regarding industry price fixing. The lawsuits referred to agreements which have “the effect of artificially maintaining high prices” of generic drugs and falsely “creating an appearance of competition.” Among the companies are Teva, the world’s largest generic drug manufacturer and Mylan, which recently received much public attention after it raised the price of the EpiPen a ridiculous amount;some would argue for sheer greed and disregard for public safety.

Investigation for the lawsuit began in July 2014, begun by the state of Connecticut. According to Connecticut, the state found a broad, long-running, well coordinated series of schemes to fix the markets and prices for a number of pharmaceutical medications across the country.

The lawsuit focuses on the antibiotic drug doxycycline, and also on the diabetes medication, glyburide, but there are many other generic drugs prices have skyrocketed for no good reason, other than pharmaceutical company gouging of the public.

In addition, federal prosecutors are making similar allegations against 2 ex-executives at Heritage Pharmaceuticals. Heritage is one of the companies named in the state lawsuit. The federal prosecutors are alleging the executives engaging in a scheme to also fix the price of doxycycline and glyburide. In turn, the company, Heritage is blaming the activity on the two ex-executives Jason Malek and Jeffrey Glazer, who were discharged from the company in August, 2016. Heritage disavows any responsibility, claiming Malek and Glazer were responsible and “looted. Post quote tens of millions of dollars from the company.

The free-market system only works when there is true competition among companies. The idea of free enterprise is to benefit the public. Those injured, and their families can no longer afford medical care and necessary medications all too often. If you are injured in an accident, or trauma, or develop a serious medical problem, or disease and can no longer work you may well lose your insurance coverage. At some point whether it is a month, two months or some other time period, if you are no longer working, and have assets, own a home, etc. you stand at risk to lose everything you worked for, through no fault of your own. in representing injured individuals and their families, I have seen it. Let’s hope, in addition to the states winning the lawsuit against the pharmaceutical companies, that free enterprise is encouraged and markets aren’t fixed by mega companies, to the disadvantage of the public.