Eli Lilly asks judge to toss Hood’s contributor’s lawsuit

Before Eli Lilly & Co. decides to settle Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood’s Zyprexa lawsuit, it wants a federal judge to take a look at a recent decision by the Alabama Supreme Court.

Eli Lilly says the Court addressed issues relevant to its pending motion for summary judgment when it decided AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals was not responsible for losses to Alabama’s Medicaid program. That 8-1 decision, reached Oct. 16, wiped out a $160 million verdict.

“The Supreme Court of Alabama held that the State’s knowledge barred any claim of reasonable reliance and any recovery for alleged fraud. This Court should reach the same result.”

“Moreover, like the (Alabama Medicaid Agency) in AstraZeneca, the State of Mississippi did not change its reimbursement pracctices with respect to Zyprexa until a year after its lawsuit was filed, despite allegedly ‘discovering’ Lilly’s ‘fraud,’ and the only when Lilly rejected the State’s demand for supplemental rebates.

“On this record, as in AstraZeneca, the State can’t claim reasonable reliance, can’t establish causation and can’t prevail on its fraud-based claims.”

Only Mississippi’s suit continues to see consistent action. The other suits over which Weinstein presided were brought by West Virginia, Connecticut, Minnesota, Montana, New Mexico, Louisiana and Utah.

South Carolina has settled its state court case for $45 million, 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.