A federal district judge on Friday held “pharma bro” Martin Shkreli liable for antitrust claims brought by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and seven states.
U.S. Senior District Judge Denise Cote of the Southern District of New York imposed a lifetime ban against Shkreli participating in the pharmaceutical industry and ordered him to pay $64.6 million to offset ill-gotten gains. Shkreli’s former company and former business partner agreed last month to settle anticompetitive conduct claims against them.
After Shkreli’s company Turing Pharmaceuticals (now called Vyera) bought Daraprim in August 2015, it raised its price from $13.50 to $750 per tablet. That September, several state AIDS drug assistance programs (ADAPs) reported to the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) that they were unable to buy Daraprim at the 340B price. Georgia temporarily removed Daraprim from its ADAP formulary due to the spike in price. The 340B price reportedly was $0.01, due to Daraprim’s sharp price increase (under federal law and 340B program rules, a drug’s 340B price can fall as low as a penny if its average manufacturer price rises sufficiently higher than the inflation rate).
FTC Chair Lina Khan said Shkreli’s lifetime ban “should be a warning to corporate executives everywhere that they may be held individually responsible for the anticompetitive conduct they direct or control.”
New York State Attorney General Leticia James said, “In particular, the court’s conclusion that Vyera’s conduct to delay and thwart generic competition was illegal puts pharmaceutical companies on notice that such anticompetitive efforts violate the law.”