Big Pharma Owner Behind Opioid Epidemic Caught Red-Handed Transferring $1Billion To Offshore Accounts
Pharmaceutical giant Purdue Pharma was caught transferring over $1 billion to offshore accounts in an effort to hide the money from the government as they face a growing number of lawsuits over their role in the opioid crisis, CNN reports.
Citing New York Attorney General Letitia James, the News Network reported that authorities identified about $1 billion in wire transfers between the Sackler family, owners of Purdue Pharma, and different financial institutions in Switzerland.
The discovery was made after James subpoenaed 33 financial institutions for information about the Sackler family’s wealth.
“While the Sacklers continue to lowball victims and skirt a responsible settlement, we refuse to allow the family to misuse the courts in an effort to shield their financial misconduct,” James said in a statement. “The limited number of documents provided to us so far underscore the necessity for compliance with every subpoena.”
Some of the Sackler family money transfers were routed through Swiss bank accounts, including one worth $64 million wired to Purdue Pharma co-owner Mortimer Sackler through an account “located in the Bailiwick of Guernsey, in the Channel Islands,” according to the court filing.
More than 50 states and territories are suing Purdue, and this week 27 announced that they were in favor of a proposed deal with Purdue and the Sacklers worth as much as $12 billion. Lawyers for nearly 2,300 cities and counties suing Purdue also expressed support.
The New York AG’s office, which is among the plaintiffs opposing the deal, alleged in the Friday filing that Mortimer Sackler hid his ownership of an Upper Eastside townhouse in Manhattan through a shell corporation and that he failed to disclose its existence in the litigation.
In its filing, the AG’s office said, “Already these records have allowed the state to identify previously unknown shell companies that one of the Sackler defendants used to shift Purdue money through accounts around the world and then conceal it.”
Friday’s filing indicates that it only reflects the initial findings from a single unnamed financial institution’s response to the attorney general’s subpoena in the case.
The New York attorney general’s office identified several previously unknown entities that are “believed to serve as conduits for transfers from Purdue to the Sackler Defendants” based on the documents provided by that unnamed financial institution.