Maui News

Nationwide Resolution of Lawsuits Over Opioid Crisis Secures $4.3 Billion

July 11, 2021, 4:52 PM HST
* Updated July 11, 11:01 AM
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Maui Now file photo.

Attorney General Clare E. Connors announced Hawaiʻi’s participation in a nationwide resolution of lawsuits against the Sackler family and their company, Purdue Pharma, that will require them to pay more than $4.3 billion for prevention, treatment and recovery efforts in communities across the country, as well as make public tens of millions of documents related to their role in the opioid crisis, state officials said.

The nationwide resolution, which also resolves the civil enforcement action Attorney General Connors brought against Purdue Pharma and the Sacklers on behalf of the State, was filed in bankruptcy court on Wednesday night and remains subject to approval.

Specifically, it requires Purdue Pharma to be either sold or wound down by 2024. It also requires the Sacklers to make one of the largest individual payments ever made in US history to resolve a law enforcement action. In addition, Purdue Pharma and the Sacklers must make public more than 30 million documents, including attorney-client privileged communications about the original FDA approval of OxyContin and the tactics used to promote opioids, according to the state Attorney General’s office.

“This resolution holds the Sacklers and Purdue Pharma accountable for their role in the promotion of opioids and the crisis that ensued, which ruined so many lives across this nation and here in Hawai‘i,” said Attorney General Connors. “While no amount of money can repair the damage caused, this resolution will fund opioid abatement programs in Hawai‘i and establishes a document repository that ensures the public has access to the truth about this tragedy.” 

Of the $4.325 billion the Sacklers will pay over the next nine years, Hawai‘i is expected to receive an estimated $13 million for opioid abatement.

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