Big Pharma Pfizer Guilty of Massive Fraud

Pfizer, the drugs giant, has been ordered to pay $2.3 billion (£1.4 billion), America’s largest healthcare fraud settlement, for making false claims about four prescription medications.

The payout — comprising a $1.3 billion criminal fine and a $1 billion civil fine — includes $102 million to be divided between 11 whistleblowers. All thought to be former employees, they became so concerned that the company was asking them to break the law and mis-sell the drugs — Bextra, Geodon, Zyvox and Lyrica — that they reported it to the authorities.

Mike Loucks, the acting US Attorney for the District of Massachusetts, who led the criminal investigation of Bextra, said he hoped that the case would send a powerful message to corporate America that “blatant and continued disregard of the law” would not be tolerated. “The size and seriousness of this resolution … reflect the seriousness and scope of Pfizer’s crimes.”

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