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Utah sues drugmaker over opioid dangers

SALT LAKE CITY – Negotiations for a settlement wouldn’t work, so the state of Utah is suing a drugmaker, claiming it knew the dangers of its opioids.

The lawsuit claims Purdue Pharma lied.

“They knew how addictive and dangerous these drugs were, and are, and they continued to aggressively market them to physicians and the public,” Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes said.

He claims Purdue’s opioids led to deaths in Utah.

Like Utah counties suing other pharmaceutical companies, Reyes wants any money collected to go to victims and their families.

Utah is suing Purdue as other governments have sued big tobacco, claiming that industry doesn’t warn consumers about the dangers and deadliness of its product.

Beaver County Commissioner Mark Whitney says drug makers put profits above people like his recovering son.

“It’s the bottom line with them,” he said. “They don’t care how many lives are lost, or how many families are destroyed.

“We’re going to bring them to their knees.”