Office of the Attorney General
Attorney General Conway Announces $5.8 Million in Civil Penalties Against Glaxosmithkline for Consumer Protection Violations
For the second time this week, Attorney General Jack Conway is announcing stiff civil penalties against a drug manufacturer for violating Kentucky's Consumer Protection Act. On Wednesday, January 27, 2010, Franklin Circuit Judge Roger Crittenden awarded the Commonwealth more than $5.8 million in civil penalties in its case against GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), for deceptive or false marketing of the anti-nausea drugs Kytril and Zofran, among others.
"These civil penalties send a clear message to drug companies that Kentucky's Consumer Protection law will be strictly enforced," said General Conway. "I appreciate the hard work of my attorneys in this case and Judge Crittenden's continued commitment to consumer protection statutes in the Commonwealth."
On November 13, 2009, a Franklin Circuit Court jury handed down a $661,860 verdict against GSK for its deceptive marketing practices. The Commonwealth had also accused GSK of defrauding Kentucky's Medicaid Program.
Earlier this week, Judge Crittenden awarded $5.3 million in civil penalties against pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca for more than 5,000 willful violations of Kentucky's Consumer Protection Act. In October 2009, the Commonwealth received a $14.7 million verdict against Astra Zeneca for defrauding the Medicaid program and Kentucky consumers by inflating the prices of their prescription drugs, including popular brands like Crestor, Nexium and Prilosec.
The Office of the Attorney General has filed suit against 47 of the nation's pharmaceutical manufacturers, alleging violations to Kentucky's Medicaid Fraud and Consumer Protection statutes and false and deceptive advertising. In June 2009, General Conway announced a $16 million verdict against generic-drugs manufacturer Sandoz for inflating the prices of its prescription drugs. The Attorney General's office has also settled cases with Amgen for $2.4 million, Immunex for $145,000, Bristol-Meyers Squibb for $10 million and Baxter Healthcare Corporation for $2 million.
Since General Conway took office in January 2008, his Office of Medicaid Fraud and Abuse Control has recovered or obtained verdicts totaling nearly $100 million for the Kentucky Medicaid Program.