NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) - Private attorneys representing the State of Mississippi recently called Eli Lilly & Co.'s request for summary judgment mind-boggling.
Fletcher Trammell of Houston plaintiffs firm Bailey Perrin Bailey says the company shouldn't be seeking summary judgment because it has already spent billions of dollars setting federal and state claims "identical" to Mississippi's.
Mississippi is one of the few states that has not yet settled its lawsuit over the prescription antipsychotic Zyprexa.
"In a summary judgment filing that borders on the surreal - after settling billions of dollars in claims and penalties with the federal and nearly every other state government over identical conduct, along with settling thousands of related personal injury claims - Defendant Eli Lilly & Company seeks to avoid liability to the State of Mississippi by principally arguing that the State has insufficient evidence to support its claims," Fletcher wrote Wednesday.
"As a purely conceptual matter, Lilly's notion that the State cannot reach a jury trial on the record evidence that is already before this Court of Lilly's fraudulent conduct directed at the federal and state Medicaid systems as well as other third party payers - irrespective of the evidence adduced by the State in response to Lilly's Motion - boggles the mind."
Twelve states did not settle their claims against Eli Lilly in a 33-state, $62 million settlement. Connecticut settled for $25.1 million, and West Virginia settled for more than $22 million, with $6.75 going to outside counsel hired by state Attorney General Darrell McGraw. Idaho settled its case for $13 million, with more than $2.5 million going to outside attorneys.
Eli Lilly has paid $1.4 billion to settle federal civil and criminal claims stemming from the alleged off-label marketing.
The payment also benefited the Medicaid programs of more than 30 states that collectively received approximately $362 million.
Other states have reached settlements, but they have not been made final.
Only Mississippi has not reached a settlement from a group of states that had claims in federal court. The others are West Virginia, Connecticut, Minnesota, Montana, New Mexico, Louisiana and Utah.
South Carolina has settled its state court case, while Utah, Pennsylvania and Arkansas have cases remaining in state courts.
Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood hired outside counsel to represent the State. They are:
-Bailey Perrin Bailey of Houston, which has donated $75,000 Hood.
-W. Howard Gunn and Associates of Aberdeen, Miss., which donated $2,500 to Hood before the 2007 election; and
-William Quin of The Quin Firm in Jackson, Miss., who donated $3,000 to Hood while employed at Lundy & Davis in 2005.
From Legal Newsline: Reach John O'Brien by e-mail at email@example.com.