The City of Chicopee has sued the pharmaceutical manufacturers, distributors, board members, and executives who caused the nation’s devastating opioid epidemic. Chicopee joins hundreds of governmental entities nationwide that have filed lawsuits in connection with the deceptive marketing and reckless distribution of prescription opioids. The international complex litigation firm Scott+Scott Attorneys at Law LLP represents Chicopee in the litigation.
Like many other communities across Massachusetts, Chicopee has been hard hit by the opioid epidemic. That epidemic has negatively affected Chicopee’s fiscal budgets and diverted needed resources from the police and fire departments. Through its lawsuit, Chicopee seeks to recoup from the opioid manufacturers, distributors, and key individual executives and board members, the amount of money the local government has already spent on combating the effects of opioid addiction, and to fund the costs Chicopee will incur in the foreseeable future to abate this legal and deadly nuisance created by defendants.
The City of Chicopee filed its civil complaint in Middlesex Superior Court on February 4th, 2019. The complaint alleges that pharmaceutical manufacturers misled the medical community and the public about the risks and benefits of prescription opioids, that pharmaceutical distributors failed to monitor and control the drugs’ supposedly closed distribution network, and that various board members and executives personally sanctioned the corporate defendants’ actions. Chicopee’s complaint was filed in conjunction with similar actions brought by Springfield, Haverhill, Framingham, Gloucester, Salem, Lynnfield, and Wakefield (represented by Scott+Scott) and follows a complaint filed by the City of Worcester (also represented by Scott+Scott) in July 2018.
“The City of Chicopee will continue to provide for the safety and well-being of its residents, but will hold those in the pharmaceutical world responsible where appropriate. This litigation is one way to enable us to do so,” said Chicopee Mayor Richard J. Kos.
Partner Judy Scolnick of Scott+Scott said: “We are honored to have been selected to represent Chicopee in this important lawsuit. The dedicated employees of Chicopee are doing all they can to try to ameliorate the devastation left in the wake of the defendant manufacturers’ and distributors’ greed-driven scheme to increase the sale of opioid pills which are basically heroin in their molecular structure and effect on human opioid receptors – with little or no regard to their safety or high risk of addiction. The false and deceptive marketing and reckless distribution of opioids has caused an increase in the disease of addiction with all the ensuing fallouts from this disease: death, overdoses, increased demand on police, fire, EMT, and courts, and a diversion of taxpayer revenue. While no amount of money can fairly compensate Chicopee for the deadly nuisance that the defendants have created, we intend to pursue this case vigorously, so Chicopee is not left to shoulder the burden of the defendants’ greed without substantial contribution from the defendants for past damages, and to abate the ongoing legal nuisance.”
Scott+Scott is headquartered in Connecticut and has offices in New York, Ohio, California and London, England. One of the nation’s premier law firms, Scott+Scott had recovered billions of dollars for its clients in pharmaceutical fraud, securities fraud, antitrust/competition and consumer fraud litigation. Scott+Scott has enlisted the support of Anderson & Kreiger LLP, a highly regarded Boston law firm. With decades of complex litigation expertise, financial resources, staffing, and technological capabilities, Scott+Scott – combined with Anderson & Kreiger’s close familiarity with Massachusetts municipal law and state courts – will provide to Chicopee the most effective representation available to ensure the highest possible chance of success.