Attorney General Alan Wilson Joins 39 State Attorneys General in Federal Generic Drug Antitrust Lawsuit

(COLUMBIA, S.C.) – March 1, 2017 Attorney General Alan Wilson announced today that South Carolina has joined a federal antitrust lawsuit alleging that six generic drug-makers entered into illegal conspiracies in order to unreasonably restrain trade, artificially inflate and manipulate prices and reduce competition in the United States for two generic drugs.

An amended complaint filed with the federal court increases the number of plaintiff states in the lawsuit from 20 to 40, which was initially filed in December 2016. The amended complaint also adds claims of alleged violations of state antitrust laws – in addition to the alleged violations of federal antitrust laws – in each of the 40 states, as well as state consumer protection laws in most of the states, against the defendant generic companies Heritage Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Aurobindo Pharma USA, Inc., Citron Pharma, LLC, Mayne Pharma (USA), Inc., Mylan Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc.

In this lawsuit led by Connecticut, South Carolina joins Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin.

“South Carolinians have been unjustly victimized by large pharmaceutical companies looking to take advantage of their medical needs,” said Attorney General Wilson. “I am proud to join my fellow state attorneys general in exposing these companies for this long-running conspiracy to fix prices and allocate markets for these medications.”

The drugs in question are doxycycline hyclate delayed release, an antibiotic, and glyburide, an oral diabetes medication.

The complaint alleges that the defendants routinely coordinated their schemes through direct interaction with their competitors at industry trade shows, customer conferences and other events, as well as through direct email, phone and text message communications. The alleged anticompetitive conduct – including efforts to fix and maintain prices, allocate markets and otherwise thwart competition – caused significant, harmful and continuing effects in the country’s healthcare system, the states allege.

The lawsuit was filed under seal in the U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut. Portions of the complaint are redacted in order to avoid compromising the ongoing investigation.

Please click here to view a copy of the redacted amended complaint.

 

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