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OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma reaches potential opioid-crisis settlement

The settlement involves nearly half of the states and some 2,000 local governments. Some states, however, may continue their fights.

OxyContin pills and bottle on desk
This Feb. 19, 2013, file photo shows OxyContin pills arranged for a photo at a pharmacy in Montpelier, Vt. Purdue, the maker of OxyContin, is facing about 2,500 lawsuits seeking to hold it accountable for the opioid crisis, which has killed more than 400,000 people in the U.S. since 2000.
AP Photo/Toby Talbot, File

HARTFORD, Conn. — Nearly half the states and some 2,000 local governments have agreed to a tentative settlement with OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma over the toll of the nation’s opioid crisis.

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said the agreement reached Wednesday included more money from the family that owns Purdue than had been offered previously.

He told The Associated Press the tentative settlement deal was the quickest way to get relief for communities devastated by the opioid epidemic.

Sources with direct knowledge of the talks say that Stamford, Connecticut-based Purdue will pay up to $12 billion over time and that the Sackler family will give up control of the company. The sources spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly.

Paul Farrell is an attorney for several local governments. He said in a text message that they have agreed to a deal that has been on the table for several weeks.

Even with Wednesday’s development, roughly half the states had not signed on. Several state attorneys general vowed to continue their legal battles against the company and the Sacklers.

Mulvihill reported from New Jersey. Associated Press writer Jonathan J. Cooper in Phoenix contributed to this report.