NJ AG Grewal Announces Lawsuit Against Sackler Family at PDFNJ Statewide Law Enforcement Opioid Conference



Contact: Matt Birchenough, 201-916-1032, media@drugfreenj.org

Attorney General Grewal Announces Lawsuit Against Sackler Family at PDFNJ Statewide Law Enforcement Opioid Conference

ATLANTIC CITY ­--- New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal announced his office has filed a lawsuit against eight members of the Sackler family, founders of Purdue Pharma, at an opioid conference hosted by the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey on Thursday.

More than 150 representatives from over 60 state, county and local law enforcement agencies received an in-depth look into the opioid epidemic ravaging the state at the New Jersey Law Enforcement Training: On the Front Lines of the Opioid Epidemic conference.

Grewal, who delivered the keynote address at the event, made the first public announcement of the lawsuit against the founders of Purdue Pharma, which produced the opioid painkiller, oxycontin.

“We allege that these eight defendants, despite knowing the highly addictive nature of their product, adopted highly deceptive marketing practices, encouraged reckless prescriptions and targeted multiple patient populations,” Grewal said in his keynote address at the event. “They sought and reaped huge profits from the suffering of others.”

The conference featured a panel of federal law enforcement officials discussed the opioid crisis from a national perspective and featured Special Agent in Charge Susan Gibson of the DEA – New Jersey Division, Supervisory Special Agent Mike Ratta, of the FBI – Newark Division and Assistant United States Attorney Vikas Khanna.

“New Jersey law enforcement, at all levels, has been a steadfast partner in our mutual mission to address substance abuse with a focus on prevention,” said PDFNJ Executive Director Angelo Valente.

A second panel featuring New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs Acting Director Paul R. Rodríguez, Lieutenant Colonel Fritz Fragé of New Jersey State Police, Sussex County Prosecutor Francis Koch and Dr. Diane Calello, Executive and Medical Director of the New Jersey Poison Information and Education System, examined the crisis from the state level.

The conference also featured presentations on opioid-related programs that agencies have successfully implemented in New Jersey. Assistant Special Agent in Charge Christopher Jakim of the DEA – New Jersey Division highlighted the Newark Cares program, while Morris County Sheriff James Gannon discussed the Hope One Mobile Recovery Unit and Newton Police Chief Michael Richards spotlighted the Sussex County Community Law Enforcement Addiction Recovery (C.L.E.A.R.) program.

Of the more than 200 attendees at the training, more than 150 were law enforcement professionals, including eight local police chiefs and representatives from 11 county prosecutor’s offices and five sheriff’s departments.


Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey: Best known for its statewide substance use prevention advertising campaign, the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey is a private not-for-profit coalition of professionals from the communications, corporate and government communities whose collective mission is to reduce demand for illicit drugs in New Jersey through media communication.  To date, more than $100 million in broadcast time and print space has been donated to the Partnership’s New Jersey campaign, making it the largest public service advertising campaign in New Jersey’s history. Since its inception, the Partnership has garnered 174 advertising and public relations awards from national, regional and statewide media organizations.