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GSK Breaks Record with $3 Billion Penalty for Illegal Drug Marketing

    A pharmaceutical giant has broken yet another record for legal settlements stemming from claims of illegally marketing drugs and defrauding federal healthcare programs.

    GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) said this week that it would pay $3 billion to resolve federal government civil and criminal investigations into its sales practices for numerous drugs. The cases included allegations of illegal selling of Avandia, a diabetes drug linked to heart risks, as well as paying doctors and manipulating medical research to promote the drug.

    The $3 billion also will settle a Justice Department probe into GSK’s Medicaid pricing practices and an investigation led by the U.S. attorneys in Colorado and Massachusetts into the sales and marketing of nine of its drugs from 1997 to 2004.

    GSK’s settlement will be the largest to date among federal cases against pharmaceutical companies accused of off-label marketing, eclipsing the previous record of $2.3 billion paid by Pfizer in 2009.

    GSK previously paid almost $1 billion for birth defects caused by its anti-depression medication Paxil. In October 2010, it set another record, paying a fine of $150 million, the largest ever to settle criminal charges for knowingly marketing products produced at a contaminated facility, including Paxil; Avandia; Bactroban, an antibiotic ointment; Coreg, a heart drug; and Tagamet, an acid reflux drug.

    Source: AllGov - Everything Our Government Really Does
    Article by Noel Brinkerhoff, David Wallechinsky
    Saturday, November 05, 2011


  1. squeezix
    What I would like to know is where is that 3 Billion going?
  2. sassyspy
    ^^^^ you can bet not to decrease the US deficit. Or, for that matter, not to any social welfare organizations or drug rehabilitation programs.

    GSK got this big fine because they got caught with their pants down.
    All the other drug manufacturers are doing the same thing.
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