Sparks Fly In Opioid MDL As Judge, Attys Debate Next Trials

Law360 (November 7, 2019, 10:26 PM EST) -- The Ohio federal judge supervising multidistrict opioid litigation has warned attorneys for local governments and drug companies that he will unilaterally select future bellwether trials unless they quickly do so themselves, according to a meeting transcript obtained Thursday by Law360.

U.S. District Judge Dan Aaron Polster delivered the ultimatum during a closed-door status conference Wednesday afternoon in Cleveland federal court, where the MDL’s first bellwether trial was narrowly averted last month by settlements worth a quarter-billion dollars.

Wednesday's roughly one-hour conference featured fireworks from the get-go. Early on, Judge Polster scoffed at defense attorneys for raising objections that would leave key...

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