Florida Attorney General Subpoena’s Eli Lilly Re: Zyprexa documents

Florida Attorney General Subpoena’s Eli Lilly Re: Zyprexa documents

Wed, 3 Aug 2005

Reuters reports that Eli Lilly received a subpoena in June from Florida’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit of the Attorney General office which seeks documents pertaining to the marketing of Zyprexa.

Lilly said “it was possible that other Lilly products could become subject to the investigation and that the investigation could lead to criminal charges, fines or penalties against the company.”

The Pennsylvania AG’s office has been investigating Lilly’s marketing of Zyprexa and Prozac.

Clearly, Lilly’s $690 million settlement in June, involving thousands of lawsuits arising from drug-induced diabetes, did not  settle the company’s controversial marketing tactics.  

Contact: Vera Hassner Sharav
212-595-8974

Reuters     

Lilly says Fla. prosecutor seeks Zyprexa documents Wed Aug 3, 2005 1:46 PM ET

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Eli Lilly and Co.  on Wednesday said it had received a subpoena from the Florida attorney general’s office seeking documents on Medicaid-related sales of the company’s Zyprexa schizophrenia drug and Lilly’s marketing of its blockbuster medicine.

In a regulatory filing, the Indianapolis drugmaker said it had received the subpoena in June from the Medicaid Fraud Control Unit of the state attorney general’s office.

Lilly said it was possible that other Lilly products could become subject to the investigation and that the investigation could lead to criminal charges, fines or penalties against the company.

Shares of Lilly fell 2 percent in early afternoon trading.

Company spokesman Phil Belt said Lilly has limited information about the subject matter of the Florida probe and is cooperating with the attorney general’s office.

“We don’t know anything other than there was a document request,” he said. “We don’t know if they will file charges, or what the charges would be.”

The company in June reached an agreement to pay as much as $690 million to settle lawsuits filed by thousands of Zyprexa patients who alleged they had not been warned the drug might increase the risk of diabetes.

In its quarterly regulatory filing, Lilly also said it plans to increase its borrowing during the remainder of 2005 by about $2 billion, in part because of the hefty Zyprexa settlement and a recently reached resolution of U.S. taxes for the years 1998 to 2000.

The amount of planned increased debt is double the $1 billion estimate the company had projected earlier this year.

The Florida investigation comes amid a continuing civil probe by the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania into Lilly’s marketing and promotions of Zyprexa and the company’s Prozac antidepressant. That investigation was announced in March 2004.

Second-quarter global sales of Zyprexa, Lilly’s biggest product, fell 10 percent to $1.1 billion, hurt by competition from newer medicines and concerns that it causes weight gains which can lead to diabetes.

Shares of Lilly were down $1.10 at $54.91 on the New York Stock Exchange — amid a slight gain for the drug sector.

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