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August 18, 2017

Cherokee Nation says opioid lawsuit belongs in tribal court

  • Government
  • Judicial
  • Neuroscience

The Associated Press – The Cherokee Nation is urging a federal judge to allow a tribal lawsuit against distributors and retailers of opioid medications to be litigated in the tribe’s own court.

Cherokee Nation Attorney General Todd Hembree has filed written arguments with U.S. District Judge Terence Kern in a lawsuit that alleges the companies have contributed to “an epidemic of prescription opioid abuse” among the tribe’s citizens. The lawsuit alleges that six distribution and pharmaceutical companies have created conditions in which “vast amounts of opioids have flowed freely from manufacturers to abusers and drug dealers” within the tribe’s territory.

Opioid-related addiction has taken the lives of hundreds of Cherokee citizens and cost the tribe hundreds of millions of dollars in health care costs, the lawsuit says.

Read more at The Associated Press.

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