- No mas: Principal bans Spanish language in intercom announcement
- Hacking software could put ‘zombie drone army’ in user’s hands
- Support for stricter gun laws drops: poll
- 10 whales dead, 41 others stranded in Everglades
- John Boehner faces bipartisan pressure to allow gay-rights vote
- Martin Bashir resigns from MSNBC over ‘ill-judged’ comments about Sarah Palin
- Rep. Duncan Hunter: While Obama prays for Iranian change, U.S. should ready its nukes
- Best company ever? Veteran Beer Co. exists to employ vets, provide quality beer
- Iran official: Sanctions ‘utterly failed’ to stop nuclear program
- ‘Black Santa’ display at IU sparks student outrage
Arkansas judge fines J&J $1.1B in Risperdal case
LITTLE ROCK, ARK. (AP) - An Arkansas judge has fined Johnson & Johnson and a subsidiary more than $1.1 billion after a jury found the companies downplayed and hid risks associated with an antipsychotic drug.
Judge Tim Fox found nearly 240,000 violations under Arkansas’ Medicaid-fraud law over Risperdal. Each violation came with a $5,000 fine, setting the total penalty at more than $1.1 billion.
Arkansas sued Johnson & Johnson and subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc. in 2007 over the drug.
Fox issued an additional $11 million fine in the Wednesday ruling for more than 4,500 violations under the state’s deceptive practices act.
Previous Risperdal verdicts against J&J include a $327 million civil penalty in South Carolina.
Texas reached a $158 million settlement with Janssen in January.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP’s earlier story is below.
A judge will decide how much a Johnson & Johnson and a subsidiary must pay the state of Arkansas, after a jury found the company downplayed and hid risks associated with an antipsychotic drug.
Jurors returned a quick verdict Tuesday in favor of the state, which had argued that Janssen Pharmaceuticals Inc. lied about the potentially life-threatening side effects of Risperdal.
Circuit Judge Tim Fox told lawyers he will read briefs and relevant cases they sent him before a hearing Wednesday to decide how much Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiary must pay.
The state’s Medicaid-fraud law calls for a minimum fine of $5,000 per violation _ or at least $1.2 billion for each of the 250,000 Risperdal prescriptions the state’s Medicaid program paid for over 3 1/2 years. Previous verdicts against J&J include a $327 million civil penalty in South Carolina that a judge upheld in December. Texas, meanwhile, reached a $158 million settlement with Janssen in January in which the company did not admit fault.
Jurors in Arkansas were not told about the financial stakes during 10 days of testimony, beyond that Janssen could have seen a $200 million swing in its revenues if it issued alarming warnings that the drug could cause weight gain, diabetes and other health effects. The award that Fox will decide would go toward the state’s Medicaid fund, which is facing a projected $400 million deficit next year.
Risperdal, introduced in 1994, is a “second-generation” antipsychotic drug that earned Johnson & Johnson billions of dollars in sales before generic versions became available several years ago. It is used to treat schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and irritability in autism patients. Risperdal and similar antipsychotic drugs have been linked to increased risk of strokes and death in elderly dementia patients, seizures, weight gain and diabetes.
The 12-person jury deliberated for three hours, just as long as the lawyers took to make closing arguments Tuesday morning.
Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel said he pursued the case to protect consumers from “fraud and deceptive trade practices.”
- Hola: Boehner prepares to push amnesty bill through House
- Inside China: Nuclear submarines capable of widespread attack on U.S.
- Apple wins facial recognition patent for iPhone 6
- Kill team: Obama war chiefs widen drone death zones
- U.S. drops 2,000 mice on Guam by parachute to kill snakes
- Inside the Ring: China targeting U.S. spy flights
- Obamas call to close Vatican embassy is 'slap in the face' to Roman Catholics
- HURT: Postal Service misses address by a whole continent
- Puerto Rico caravan honoring Paul Walker ends in 6 drunken-driving arrests, 72 speeding tickets
- Pentagon may give recruits 'a shot to start over' after shameful social media posts
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
A libertarian look at breaking news and political trends by author Tom Mullen.
A stat-head’s outlook, direct from his worn in couch cushion.
Playing Through covers the world of PGA golf, as well as tips your the average golfer to play better.