Attorney General James Joins 44 State Coalition In Motion To Unseal Generic Drug Price Fixing Complaint  

NEW YORK – Attorney General Letitia James today joined a 44-state coalition led by Connecticut Attorney General William Tong in a motion to unseal their complaint against Teva Pharmaceuticals and 19 of the nation's largest generic drug manufacturers. The complaint, filed on May 10 in U.S. District Court for the District of Connecticut, alleges a broad conspiracy to artificially inflate and manipulate prices, reduce competition, and unreasonably restrain trade for more than 100 different drugs.  

“The evidence outlined in this lawsuit shows an ongoing scheme to cheat consumers by padding the pockets of pharmaceutical companies – and the American public deserves to see that evidence,” said Attorney General Letitia James. “These companies intentionally fixed prices on a range of drugs, taking gross advantage of millions of individuals who depend on these medications to stay in good health. We will continue to advocate for the release of this information and to hold these companies accountable for this deceptive and dangerous behavior.”  

The complaint alleges that Teva, Sandoz, Mylan, Pfizer, and 16 other generic drug manufacturers engaged in a broad, coordinated and systematic conspiracy to fix prices, allocate markets, and rig bids for more than 100 different generic drugs. The drugs span all types, including tablets, capsules, suspensions, creams, gels, and ointments; and classes, including statins, ace inhibitors, beta blockers, antibiotics, anti-depressants, contraceptives, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. They treat a range of diseases and conditions from basic infections to diabetes, cancer, epilepsy, multiple sclerosis, HIV, ADHD, and more. In some instances, the coordinated price increases were over 1,000 percent.   

The complaint lays out an interconnected web of industry executives where these competitors who met with each other during industry dinners, lunches, cocktail parties, golf outings and communicated via frequent telephone calls, emails, and text messages sowing the seeds for their illegal agreements. Throughout the complaint, defendants are described as using terms like "fair share," "playing nice in the sandbox," and "responsible competitor" to describe how they unlawfully discouraged competition, raised prices, and enforced an ingrained culture of collusion. 

This complaint is the second to be filed in an ongoing, expanding investigation of the generic drug industry. The first complaint was similarly filed under seal initially, and later released in full with permission from the court.