In a landmark opioid painkiller case, a federal bankruptcy judge has approved what potentially may be a $10-billion settlement. It included a plutocratic clan winning sweeping protections from further civil lawsuits by pledging to fork over $4.5 billion from their family fortunes.
Despite the seeming bounty in this case, the Purdue Pharmaceutical payout also may go in the legal books as unacceptably mean and little.
Robert Drain — the jurist who presided over the dissolution of Purdue, the enterprise that enriched the Sackler family in unimaginable fashion through the peddling of powerful prescription pain drugs like OxyContin — not only conceded the company’s bankruptcy was a bitter end. He also spelled out that term, B-I-T-T-E-R, letter for letter for the court record.