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Civil RICO Litigation: Multi-County Federal Lawsuit Filed Against Major Consulting Firm In Opioid Case


According to a report from The Greeneville Sun, a multi-county federal civil RICO lawsuit has been filed against McKinsey & Company, the international management consulting firm. The allegations raised in the lawsuit contend that the guidance McKinsey provided to Purdue Pharma L.P. helped to fuel the American opioid crisis. In this article, our Miami RICO claims lawyer offers an overview of the lawsuit filed against McKinsey & Company.

Background: Opioid Deaths Continue to Spike, Purdue Pharma Faces Liability 

On November 17th, 2021, the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that drug overdose deaths topped 100,000 in the United States for the first time. It is a tragic figure in our nation’s history. The CDC reports that opioids account for more than 75 percent of all overdose deaths. Several courts have determined that Purdue Pharma bears liability for the epidemic.

Founded in New York City in 1892, Purdue Pharma is a multi-billion dollar drug company. The pharmaceutical giant was the primary manufacturer and marketer of the brand-name opioid drug OxyContin. Purdue Pharma has now been held liable for billions in civil damages in a number of different claims filed by jurisdictions throughout the United States.

Civil RICO Allegations: McKinsey & Company Advises Purdue Pharma on Opioids 

Thus far, seven counties have filed a civil RICO lawsuit against the global consulting firm McKinsey & Company. The counties include Greene County, South Carolina and six more counties in Eastern Tennessee. In their civil RICO lawsuit, these municipalities alleges that McKinsey bears civil RICO liability for the recommendations that it made to Purdue Pharma prior to 2007. At that time, several executives at Purdue Pharma entered guilty pleas in an opioid-related drug misbranding case. For reference, McKinsey & Company has already settled an opioid-related lawsuit with several U.S. states, including the State of Tennessee. Earlier in 2021, McKinsey agreed to pay a total of nearly $600 million as part of a settlement to a number of different states.

Counties Allege an “Opioid Marketing Enterprise” 

Civil RICO claims are complicated. Time after time, federal and state courts have ruled that a RICO violation is more than fraud. To prove liability in a civil RICO case, plaintiffs must prove a number of specific factors, including that the defendants engaged in an enterprise. In this case, the county governments contend that Purdue Pharma, its executives, and McKinsey engaged in an “opioid marketing enterprise” with the express goal of selling as many opioid products as possible—with no consideration to patient health or public health. 

Schedule a Fully Confidential Consultation with a South Florida Civil RICO Lawyer

At Pike & Lustig, LLP, our Miami business litigation lawyers represent clients in civil RICO litigation. If you have any questions about your legal rights or legal options, we are here to help you secure justice. Contact us today for a strictly confidential evaluation of your case. From our law offices in Miami-Dade County and Palm Beach County, we handle civil RICO claims throughout Florida.




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