Bailey County sues nationally known drug makers and retailors, claims of racketeering

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FILE – This Tuesday, Aug. 15, 2017, file photo shows an arrangement of pills of the opioid oxycodone-acetaminophen in New York. (AP Photo/Patrick Sison, File)

LUBBOCK, Texas — Bailey County sued a long list of drug makers and nationally-known retailers this week in Lubbock federal court. Among the claims is racketeering.

The lawsuit said, “Defendants, in an attempt to sell more pharmaceutical drugs, changed doctors’ views regarding opioids through deceptive marketing schemes.”

A partial list of defendants includes Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Johnson & Johnson, Abbott Laboratories, Knoll Pharmaceutical Company, Cardinal Health, CVS Health, Walgreens Boot Alliance, Walmart Stores, Rite Aid Corporation, and the Kroger Company.

The lawsuit claimed opioids are addictive and dangerous.

“The pattern of racketeering activity described herein is currently ongoing and open-ended and threatens to continue indefinitely…,” the lawsuit said.

The lawsuit also said Bailey County has been injured in multiple ways, including increased health care costs, increased human services costs, opioid-related crimes and
emergencies, and other public safety costs.

Bailey County is located northwest of Lubbock. Muleshoe is the county seat. The drug makers and major retailers have not yet filed their side of the story in court records.

The lawsuit listed the law firms of Fears Nachawati and Ferrer Poirot & Wansbrough – both in Dallas – as representing Bailey County.

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