Another Big Pharma Bust

Purdue Pharmaceutical the Stamford-based maker of Oxycontin has been fined $634.5 million after pleading guilty in a federal court to misleading the public about the dangers of taking Oxycontin.

The three executives involved – former President Michael Friedman, lawyer Howard Udell, and former medical director Paul Goldenheim – avoided jail time, but will have to pay a combined $34.5 million.

Parents of teenagers and young adults who died from overdoses arrived from all over the US to hear the sentence. Teresa Ashcraft, whose son Robert died of an overdose aged 19 said: “We have been given a life sentence due to their lies and greed.”

Parents also urged the judge to throw out the plea agreement and send the executives to jail. Unfortunately that didn’t happen.

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