Picture


​Health & Welfare Funds  
fight against huge price hikes in generic drugs
via antitrust class actions alleging various conspiracies
​among a number of drug manufacturers. 
Clobetasol
Sergeants Benevolent Association Health & Welfare Fund brought this civil antitrust action on behalf of a proposed class of Clobetasol end-payors.
For 2014, Clobetasol was among the four generic drugs that experienced the largest price increases across the United States generic pharmaceutical industry.
​As of August 2016, the price of Clobetasol remains approximately 800% higher ​than early 2014 levels.

​            Download the complaint here:
 

             Desonide
Sergeants Benevolent Association Health & Welfare Fund brought this civil antitrust action on behalf of a proposed class of Desonide end-payors. 

Defendants violated various antitrust and consumer protection laws by working together to raise and maintain the price of the treatment by dramatic margins, including a hike of more than 800 percent in 2013 for a 60-gram tube, ​from $26.75 to nearly $225.

​             Download the complaint here:

  Aggrenox
This action, filed by a large number of health and welfare funds, including Sergeants Benevolent Assoc., alleges a pay-for-delay scheme over a generic version of stroke drug Aggrenox.  Plaintiffs claim they have been purchasing Aggrenox at artificially inflated prices because Defendant Boehringer paid off a potential competitor, agreeing to give it a share of Aggrenox’s profits in exchange for delaying sale of the generic for seven years

​            Download the complaint here:

    Lidex
This case, also brought by Sergeants Benevolent Association, involves an anticompetitive conspiracy among drug manufactures to raise and fix the prices of the primary formulations of generic Lidex.  According to National Average Drug Acquisition Cost pricing data, during a single week in the summer of 2014, each Defendant more than doubled its pricing of generic Lidex, with certain product offerings increasing by more than 600%.

Download the complaint here:
 

FOR MORE INFORMATION

Email us OR fill out the form below for more information.


                                                       Summary of Cases

CLOBETASOL
Sergeants Benevolent Association Health & Welfare Fund v. Fougera Pharmaceuticals, Inc. et al, No. 1:16-cv-07229  (S.D.N.Y. filed Sept. 15, 2016)

This is a civil antitrust action brought by Sergeants Benevolent Association Health & Welfare Fund on behalf of a proposed class of end-payors who indirectly purchased, reimbursed, or otherwise paid for the following formulations of generic Clobetasol Propionate: (1) topical ointment .05%; (2) topical solution .05%; (3) topical gel .05%; or (4) topical cream .05%.

For 2014, Clobetasol was among the four generic drugs that experienced the largest price increases across the United States generic pharmaceutical industry. As of August 2016, the price of Clobetasol remains approximately 800% higher than early 2014 levels.

Between June and September 2014, Defendants collectively raised their Clobetasol prices approximately 1,140%. Defendants’ Clobetasol prices have stabilized at supracompetitively high levels. Between August 2014 and August 2015, Defendants collectively maintained Clobetasol price increases of approximately 950%. Whereas, in 2013, a 60-gram tube of Clobetasol cream cost $15.60, as of 2015, the cost was nearly $250.

As of August 2016, the price of Clobetasol remains approximately 800% higher than early 2014 levels.

The Complaint alleges that Defendants Fougera Pharmaceuticals Inc., Hi-Tech Pharmacal Co., Inc., Perrigo Company PLC, Sandoz, Inc., Taro Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., Taro Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc., and Wockhardt USA LLC made a coordinated decision not to compete, designed to fix, raise, maintain, or stabilize the price of generic Clobetasol, and in doing so, Defendants violated (1) sections 1 and 3 of the Sherman Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1, 3; and (2) the various state antitrust and consumer protection laws

Judge: William H. Pauley, III

DESONIDE
Sergeants Benevolent Association Health & Welfare Fund v. Fougera Pharmaceuticals, Inc. et al, No. 1:16-cv-07987 (S.D.N.Y. filed Oct. 12, 2016)

This action alleges Defendants Fougera Pharmaceuticals Inc., Perrigo Company PLC, Perrigo New York, Inc., Sandoz, Inc., Taro Pharmaceutical Industries, Ltd., and Taro Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc. violated federal and various state antitrust laws by conspiring to artificially raise and fix prices for generic variations of the topical skin cream Desonide.

Specifically, Defendants violated the Sherman Antitrust Act and various state antitrust and consumer protection laws by working together to raise and maintain the price of the treatment by dramatic margins, including a hike of more than 800 percent in 2013 for a 60-gram tube, from $26.75 to nearly $225.

The Complaint alleges that officials with the companies met at least twice in 2013 to coordinate the conspiracy to hike the prices, which cannot be justified as relating to the need to fund research and development because the cream is a generic.

“Defendants’ extraordinary price increases were coordinated,” the complaint reads. “These increases were neither the product of a competitive market, nor made necessary by any increased manufacturing costs.”

Taro officials disclosed in September that the U.S. Department of Justice has issued subpoenas to the company and two senior officers as part of the DOJ’s ongoing probe into anti-competitive practices in the generics pharmaceutical industry, according to the complaint.

Judge: William H. Pauley, III

AGGRENOX
In Re: Aggrenox Antitrust Litigation, No. 3:14-md-02516 (D. CT)

This action, filed by a large number of health and welfare funds alleges a pay-for-delay scheme over a generic version of stroke drug Aggrenox.  Plaintiffs claim they have been purchasing Aggrenox at artificially inflated prices because Defendant Boehringer paid off a potential competitor, agreeing to give it a share of Aggrenox’s profits in exchange for delaying sale of the generic for seven years.

Boehringer received the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s approval for Aggrenox in 1998, and it went on to become a success, netting $366 million in U.S. sales alone by 2008. Barr, which was later acquired by Teva USA parent Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., sought regulatory approval in 2007 to introduce a generic version of the drug and was promptly hit with a patent infringement suit by Boehringer, according to court documents.

To settle the patent infringement suit, Boehringer agreed to pay Barr $120 million over a period of seven years to delay the introduction of a generic version of Aggrenox until 2015, according to the complaint. In addition, Boehringer granted Barr a license to sell an authorized generic version of Aggrenox immediately.

Also as part of the deal, Boehringer trained the specialty sales force of Barr subsidiary Duramed Pharmaceuticals Inc., now known as Teva Women’s Health, to promote Aggrenox to obstetricians, gynecologists and women’s health professionals, the plaintiffs claim.

Defendants are: Teva Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc., Teva Pharmaceuticals Industries Limited, Barr Pharmaceuticals Inc., Barr Laboratories, Inc., Duramed Pharmaceuticals Inc., Duramed Pharmaceuticals Sales Corp., Boehringer Ingelheim Pharma GmbH & Co. KG, Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH, and Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

​In April, lawsuits from courts all over the country were consolidated in the Connecticut federal court.

Judge: Stefan R. Underhill


LIDEX
Sergeants Benevolent Association Health & Welfare Fund v. Taro Pharmaceutical Industries, Ltd. et al, No. 1:16-cv-08911 (S.D.N.Y, filed Nov. 16, 2016)

This case involves an anticompetitive conspiracy among Defendants to raise and fix the prices of the primary formulations of generic Lidex.  According to National Average Drug Acquisition Cost pricing data, during a single week in the summer of 2014, each Defendant more than doubled its pricing of generic Lidex, with certain product offerings increasing by more than 600%.

A report issued in August 2016 by the United States Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that generic Lidex topical cream .05%, topical ointment .05%, and topical gel .05% all “experienced an extraordinary price increase” from 2014 to 2015.  As of October 2016, generic Lidex prices remain approximately 150% above their pre-summer 2014 levels.

On September 9, 2016, Defendant Taro Israel disclosed that the United States Department of Justice issued subpoenas to Defendant Taro U.S.A. and two of its senior officers as part of the DOJ’s ongoing investigation of anticompetitive practices in the generic pharmaceutical industry. The DOJ’s subpoenas follow a number of press reports that highlighted concerns about the rising prices of generic Lidex.  Sun Pharma—Taro’s corporate parent—also is under investigation by the DOJ’s antitrust division. The DOJ has subpoenaed Sun Pharma’s business records and communications with its competitors concerning the pricing and marketing of generic drug products that Sun Pharma sells in the United States

Defendants are: Taro Pharmaceutical Industries, Ltd., Taro Pharmaceuticals USA, Inc., Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd., and Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc.

​If you would like more information about these actions, please fill out the form to the left, or contact Sheila Feerick at 1-800-221
-0015
, or email
info@SafirsteinMetcalf.com.  Safirstein Metcalf LLP represents individual and institutional clients in a wide variety of litigation, with an emphasis on class, derivative, and other complex actions on behalf of investors and consumers. The firm handles matters on a contingency fee basis.