Johnson & Johnson Opioid Trial


Maizy Cunningham

The past decade, there has been 4,653 Oklahoman’s deaths due to unintended opioid overdoses. Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter stated, “To put it bluntly, this crisis, is devastating Oklahoma.” The overdoses had started occurring due to public nuisance which is costing the state billions of dollars, the main suspect company being Johnson & Johnson.


This trial is against Johnson & Johnson due to the, “alleging the company acted as a drug ‘kingpin.’” The amount of overdoses has led to a trial beginning against Johnson & Johnson vs The State of Oklahoma. The trial is being conducted in the Norman courtroom.


This trial is actually very important, being the first major test for whether a company is allowed to make pharmaceutical companies pay for the opioid epidemic. Holding the opioid makers accountable for the deaths they are causing. Nearly 2,000 cases and this being the first major trial to take place in Oklahoma.


During the trial, the defending lawyer for Johnson & Johnson was stating how they need to discuss balance between the two reason for opioids (in people’s views). Those reasons being, the risk of addition and unrelenting pain; being what opioids are meant for (pain killers). Also stating how the Janssen was not trying to get involved with the addiction aspect, he was just trying to help relieve people’s pain.


Johnson & Johnson’s defense lawyer was stating evidence on how even the FDA said how opioids “rarely cause addiction”. The company is not trying to get involved in the opioid epidemic and never being their intentions either.


However, in 2017 there were 49,068 overdose deaths due to opioids. While there were nearly 130 people everyday that die from an opioid-related drug overdose. Being something that the country really needs to work on and solve.