Insys execs head to trial: 6 things to know

Top officials at Insys Therapeutics, maker of the addictive fentanyl spray Subsys, head to trial this week in Boston, according to Bloomberg.

Six things to know:

1. Insys Therapeutics, based in Arizona, is accused of paying bribes and kickbacks to physicians to prescribe Subsys, an opioid painkiller approved for pain management in oncology patients. However, the drugmaker allegedly prompted physicians to prescribe Subsys to patients even if they did not have cancer.

2. Former Insys CEO John Kapoor's trial will be heard first. Mr. Kapoor is accused of masterminding the illegal marketing tactics that helped fuel the opioid epidemic in the U.S. He is accused of using speakers' fees, elaborate dinners, strippers and cash to push physicians to prescribe the opioid.

3. Mr. Kapoor remains Insys' majority shareholder with about 60 percent of shares.

4. If Mr. Kapoor is convicted of kickback charges, federal fraud and racketeering, he could face up to 25 years in prison.

5. Also on trial are Insys former vice president Michael Gurry, ex-national sales director Richard Simon and former regional sales directors Joseph Rowan and Sunrise Lee. They are accused of participating in the scheme orchestrated by Mr. Kapoor. Ms. Lee is a former strip club dancer and onetime manager of an escort service who was hired as a sales executive despite having no academic degree, according to the lawsuit.

6. The trial, which could last upward of three months, will likely serve as a test case of how jurors perceive industry wrongdoing, according to the report.

Read more here.

 

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