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United States v. Rattini et al. (U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio, March 5, 2021): Judge McFarland denied an opioid distributor, two former executives, and two pharmacists’ motions to dismiss criminal indictments which accuse them of conspiring to inundate rural towns with opioids and addictive pain killers. In their request, the opioid distributor and former executives asserted that the U.S. government impermissibly based its case on their supposed nonconformity with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration guidance letters and that the alleged violations were not clear under the law. Any such charges resulting from unclear law, they argued, are unconstitutional. Judge McFarland, however, disagreed and indicated that this is a gross mischaracterization of the charges filed against them. Instead, the defendants have been charged with “conspiracy to knowingly and intentionally distribute and dispense controlled substances outside the scope of professional practice and not for a legitimate medical purpose” which violates the Controlled Substances Act. The court also denied the two pharmacists’ motions to dismiss. Read the orders here and here.

View all cases in the Judicial Trends in Public Health – May 14, 2021.

View all cases under “Mitigating The Incidence & Severity of Injuries & Other Harms.”