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Idaho Attorney General Won't Accept Purdue Settlement

Frankie Barnhill
Boise State Public Radio

Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden said Wednesday that Idaho will not be part of a reported settlement with Purdue Pharma, and the state will continue to pursue litigation against the company and its owners.

A tentative settlement was announced Wednesday between the pharmaceutical company and about 2,000 local governments in roughly two dozen states. 

Wasden said in a statement that his office has been negotiating with the manufacturer of the opioid, OxyContin, but that Idaho would not sign on to the current agreement. 

“I have determined the settlement terms agreed to by the parties are not in the State of Idaho’s best interests,” he said, “My office will continue to litigate this case.”

Idaho filed suit against Purdue Pharma in June, accusing the company of engaging in “one of the deadliest marketing campaigns in history.” It also specifically names eight members of the Sackler family, the owners of Purdue Pharma, and asks for the return of profits and revenue from opiate sales. 

The case was similar to the ones filed by states, counties and cities across the United States.The proposed settlement reportedly calls for breaking up the company, liquidating its assets and paying up to $12 billion in damages. The Sackler family would have to pay about $3 billion of that and give up control of the company.

Other states that said they were not a part of the agreement are Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Wisconsin.

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Troy Oppie is a reporter and local host of 'All Things Considered' for Boise State Public Radio News. He's also heard Saturday nights on Boise State Public Radio Music's Jazz Conversations.