After earning billions of dollars annually for illegally marketing drugs that killed or injured thousands of Americans, Pfizer simply settled their lawsuit and pulled the drug from the market.
Their fine amounted to about three months of their profits. No one went to jail.
Although the Justice Department routinely pursues cases like this, the fact that a company like Astra Zeneca can pay a $520 million fine for the illegal marketing of a drug that generates $4 billion a year smacks of arrangements once made between small town mayors, their appointed police chiefs and local madams. Unlike drug kingpins and cartels, US drug companies are typically allowed to raise drug prices, pay fines and avoid jail sentences.
Anderson Cooper explains how and why these drug companies get away with murder.
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