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Johnson & Johnson to pay $572mn over opioid crisis
Johnson & Johnson to pay $572mn over opioid crisis

Washington, Aug 27 (TIWN) A US court has ruled that American pharma major Johnson & Johnson (J&J) must pay over $572 million for its role in the opioid crisis in Oklahoma that, according to the state, has resulted in more than 6,000 deaths over the past two decades.

The damages awarded by Judge Thad Balkman of Cleveland County District Court in Norman, Oklahoma, following a seven-week, non-jury trial came in what had been a $17 billion lawsuit alleging that J&J's marketing practices helped fuel the opioid epidemic by flooding the market with painkillers.   J&J said it would appeal the verdict.   J&J shares rose 5% in extended trading following the decision.

Shares of other drugmakers, including Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd and Endo International Plc also rose after-hours.  The case brought by Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter was the first to go to trial out of thousands of lawsuits filed by state and local governments against opioid manufacturers and distributors.

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