Pharma Exec's Drug Trafficking Trial Tests Bold Legal Theory

By Jack Queen (January 14, 2022, 9:00 PM EST) -- The drug trafficking trial of a former pharmaceutical executive opening in Manhattan federal court Tuesday will test whether sales of opioids to suspected pill mills can amount to narcotics conspiracy, an unprecedented case carrying major implications for the government's response to the addiction crisis.

Laurence F. Doud is accused of directing his company, Rochester Drug Co-Operative Inc., to supply huge quantities of opioids to pharmacies suspected of giving them to people who didn't need them. The case could decide whether the Controlled Substances Act, a law typically wielded against drug dealers, can pierce corporate boardrooms. Some attorneys are skeptical.

"The government is trying...

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