US states sue 26 generic drugmakers for alleged price fixing

A coalition of 51 US states and territories filed a lawsuit in federal court in Connecticut on Wednesday, accusing 26 drug companies, including Taro, Perrigo, Novartis' Sandoz unit, Actavis, Mylan, Teva, G&W and Glenmark, of conspiring to fix prices and allocate markets for at least 80 generic topical drugs between 2009 and 2016. The filing stems from an ongoing antitrust investigation into an alleged conspiracy by generic manufacturers to artificially inflate and manipulate prices for generic drug products sold across the US. 

Connecticut Attorney General William Tong claimed that "through phone calls, text messages, emails, corporate conventions, and cozy dinner parties, generic pharmaceutical executives were in constant communication, colluding to fix prices and restrain competition…They took steps to evade accountability." He added "our case is built on hard evidence from multiple cooperating witnesses, millions of records, and contemporaneous notes that paint an undeniable picture of the largest domestic corporate cartel in our nation's history."

The lawsuit also names 10 drug company executives, responsible for sales, marketing, pricing and operations, as individual defendants.

Third complaint in ongoing probe

The complaint is the third to be filed in the ongoing antitrust probe. The first complaint, still pending in the US District Court in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, was filed in 2016 and now includes 18 corporate defendants, two individual defendants, and 15 generic drugs. The second, also pending at the same court, was filed last year against Teva and 19 other generic drug manufacturers, and names 16 individual senior executive defendants. 

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