Seven Indian drugmakers – Sun Pharma, Dr Reddy’s Laboratories, Glenmark Pharma, Lupin, Wockhardt, Zydus Pharma and Aurobindo Pharma have been named in an antitrust lawsuit filed by 40 US states against 20 drug companies accusing them of rigging prices of 100 medicines.
This was the second lawsuit filed by the attorney general of the State of Connecticut and the additional attorneys general of various US states, seeking the expansion of the investigation and alleging a broad conspiracy to artificially inflate and manipulate prices, reduce competition and unreasonably restrain trade for more than 100 different generic drugs.
The second lawsuit includes additional parties and additional products which were not referred to in the first one. The lawsuit also named 15 individual senior executive defendants at the heart of the conspiracy, including senior officials of Sun Pharma’s subsidiary Taro, Lupin and Glenmark, who were responsible for sales, marketing, pricing and operations.
The lawsuit alleges that, sometimes, one company would decide to raise prices on a particular drug, and other companies would follow suit. Other times, companies would agree to divide up the market rather than compete for the market share by lowering prices. In case of some drugs, the lawsuit mentions the prices were hiked by as much as 1,000 percent.
Drug companies like Teva and Aurobindo Pharma have issued statements. They said they were going to defend the charges in the lawsuit.