OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma pleads guilty in criminal case
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma has pleaded guilty to criminal charges and formally admitted its role in the opioid crisis.
Tuesday’s plea before a judge in Newark, New Jersey, is part of a larger settlement with the U.S Department of Justice that also includes resolving civil claims. The Stamford, Connecticut-based company is to pay $225 million as part of the deal, while $8 billion in forfeitures and penalties could be waived because of a proposed deal to resolve thousands of other lawsuits.
The company will plead guilty to three counts, including conspiracy to defraud the United States and violating federal anti-kickback laws, the officials said, and the agreement will be detailed in a bankruptcy court filing in federal court.
Advocates are upset that the guilty plea applies only to the company and not executives or members of the Sackler family who own it.
The Sacklers will lose all control over their company, a move already in the works, and Purdue will become a public benefit company, meaning it will be governed by a trust that has to balance the trust’s interests against those of the American public and public health, officials said.