|January 7, 2003
Media Contact: Jenn Meale
Phone: (850) 245-0150
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TALLAHASSEE–Attorney General Charlie Crist has announced a tentative resolution with Bristol Myers-Squibb Company that would settle the financial aspects of federal antitrust lawsuits involving two of its products. Florida’s actions, taken in conjunction with several other states, is expected to recover $155 million to settle the states’ claims for damages, penalties and individual consumer redress.
A major component of the complaints, involving the anti-anxiety drug BuSpar and the anti-breast cancer drug Taxol, was the allegations that the manufacturer unlawfully blocked the entry of less expensive generic drugs into the marketplace. The financial resolution is contingent on the parties’ reaching agreement on other settlement terms, including injunctive relief.
"This is a significant victory for the people of Florida," said Attorney General Crist. "Consumers expect to have choices when deciding which products to buy, especially in the high cost area of prescription drugs. Those on fixed incomes are among those harmed the most. As a result of this agreement, the marketplace is enhanced for their benefit."
The parties will continue to negotiate other terms to determine whether the case can be settled without further litigation.