Oklahoma sues three major opioid distributors

Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter announced Monday he is suing McKesson Corp., Cardinal Health, and AmerisourceBergen over their alleged roles in the state's opioid epidemic.

Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter announced Monday he is suing McKesson Corp., Cardinal Health, and AmerisourceBergen over their alleged roles in the state's opioid epidemic. The "Big Three" drug distributors, he said, "fueled the opioid crisis by supplying massive and patently unreasonable quantities of opioids to communities throughout the United States, including Oklahoma." According to Hunter, the three companies supplied more than 34 billion doses of opioids to the country between 2006 and 2012, including more than 1 billion doses in Oklahoma alone. "Defendants ignored their duties and responsibility to protect against oversupply and diversion of opioids for illicit and nonmedical uses. Defendants did so for one reason: Greed," Hunter said in the complaint. The suit alleges that the companies supplied more opioids into communities across Oklahoma than could have been expected to serve a legitimate medical need, while ignoring suspicious orders and red flags. The lawsuit, which was filed in Cleveland County, alleges negligence and unjust enrichment and requests compensatory damages.