Miss. AG hires private lawyers to represent state in lawsuit against opioid makers

Mississippi has joined the ranks of those public entities suing pharmaceutical companies over the marketing of opioid painkillers, with Attorney General Jim Hood lining up an in-state law firm to help in the fight.

Last week, a retention agreement was signed between Hood and Flowood, Miss., attorney John Davidson of Davidson Bowie PLLC…

…Hood alleges that the pharmaceutical makers have engaged in violations of Mississippi’s Medicaid Fraud Control Act and “other violations of law” in the fraudulent marketing and sales of “certain highly-addictive, opiate-derived painkillers” for the purposes for which they are “neither safe nor effective.”

Given that litigation of the claims may require the “expenditure of large sums of money” and require the work of “numerous” lawyers, paralegals and “others who are familiar with Defendants’ wrongful actions,” Hood said in the agreement he has determined that it is “in the best interests” of the state and its citizens to retain attorneys with “significant litigation experience.”

“Outside counsel has the amount and type of experience necessary having worked on a number of complex product related claims involving deceptive practices,” the attorney general noted.