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A coalition of advocacy groups and families is asking the Department of Justice to pursue criminal and civil charges against members of the Sackler family, which owns Purdue Pharma, as well as executives of other companies for their role in fomenting the opioid crisis in the U.S.

In a letter to Attorney General William Barr, the organizations argue that various companies — both manufacturers and distributors of opioid painkillers — created what they call a “man-made plague” and that executives should be held accountable.


“The trajectory of the opioid crisis would likely have been far less severe if, from the beginning, opioid industry executives were prosecuted for the actions they took that led to addiction and death. But it is not too late to act,” wrote the nearly 60 groups and families affected by the crisis.

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