This article was originally published by NPR: All Things Considered
Pharmaceutical distributors — the middle men in the opioid epidemic — have already been paying out millions to federal and state law enforcement officials for the companies’ role in the crisis. But a new front in the legal battle against opioids has opened. One personal injury lawyer in small-town West Virginia has come up with a creative legal theory to go after these distributors so that small, ravaged communities can collect too.
A lawyer in a small West Virginia town is taking on the wealthy middleman in the opioid crisis, the pharmaceutical distribution industry. It’s a $400 billion business that’s built on moving drugs from manufacturers to pharmacies, and these distributors are supposed to flag any unusually large orders of opioids.
Ailsa Chang of NPR’s PLANET MONEY podcast reports on a new spate of lawsuits in West Virginia that uses a creative legal theory against the distributors.
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