Ex-Merck-Guy — “He, Of the Endless Forehead” — Now Also Known As “The Bankrupting Sacklers’ Ex-CEO”…

This is just a smallish follow up to the January 27, 2014 item we posted, when Mr. Timney left Merck to go run the then just really “gathering steam power” opiates empire the Sackler family was creating, at Purdue Pharma. . . . At the time, Dr. Raymond Sackler praised him as a “proven leader.” Uh-huh.

The company filed for protection under the bankruptcy laws today, as part of its settlements with various authorities. However, the Sacklers themselves are far from out of the woods. It seems the fraudulent conveyance laws may take a dim view of the over $1 billion reportedly transferred to the family’s Swiss accounts, recently.

Here’s a bit of the AP story, this morning:

. . . .A court filing asserts that Richard Sackler, then a senior vice president in charge of sales at the company, told the sales force at a launch party for the drug: “The launch of OxyContin Tablets will be followed by a blizzard of prescriptions that will bury the competition. The prescription blizzard will be so deep, dense, and white.”

Along with others in the industry, Purdue paid doctors who attested to the drug’s safety and became a major funder of groups that advocated for pain patients and campaigned to have opioids prescribed.

The Associated Press and the Center for Public Integrity found the industry and groups it funded were also politically active, spending more than $880 million nationally on lobbying and campaigns from 2006 through 2015. That spending helped the industry fight off restrictions on prescribing the powerful painkillers. . . .

The family will already pay in $3 billion to the settlements, but if it turns out that their haul on the drugs was larger than they have reportedly averred under oath, they are likely on the hook for much more — including potentially, at least, felony fraud charges. So too, its former CEO [if the reported allegations are to be believed].

Onward, on a foggy but warm Monday morning, here. Now fully back in the saddle. . . smiling.


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