The N.Y. State Attorney General has pursued an asset search of the Sackler family, Purdue Pharma and business entities related to them. The N.Y. State Attorney General tried to do this through its lawsuit in Suffolk County N.Y. against the Sackler family and Purdue Pharma. At court filings in the Suffolk County case, the N.Y. State Attorney General essentially alleged the Sackler family hid assets through:
The N.Y. State Attorney General and others filed lawsuits against the Sackler family because the family owns Purdue Pharma which makes OxyContin. Many blame OxyContin for the U.S. opioid crisis. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the opioid crisis led to nearly 217,000 deaths in the U.S. from 1999 to 2017.
SUBPOENAS & LETTERS ROGATORY AS ASSET SEARCH TOOLS
To facilitate its asset search of the Sackler family & Purdue Pharma, the N.Y. State Attorney General used its Suffolk County lawsuit to issue subpoenas to bank witnesses in the U.S. including: J.P. Morgan Chase Bank N.A.; Morgan Stanely & Co. LLC; UBS Financial Services, Inc. & UBS Bank U.S.A; Bank of America N.A.; Charles Schwab & Co., Inc.; Citibank, N.A.; HSBC Bank USA, N.A. & HSBC Securities USA, Inc.; Wells Fargo; & Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC.
The New York State Attorney General subpoenaed the bank witnesses and others to try to collect financial evidence about alleged fraudulent transfers by the Sackler family. One of these subpoenas was issued to BR Holdings, Associates Inc. & it is available here. The N.Y. State Attorney General also pursued its asset search by using the Suffolk County lawsuit to issue letters rogatory to offshore witnesses. One of these letters rogatory is geared toward eliciting evidence from Banela Corporation in the British Virgin Islands. Banela Corporation allegedly owns all the Class A shares of Purdue Pharma, Inc. As letters rogatory can be the primary tools for gathering evidence offshore, the N.Y. State Attorney General may especially need them. This is true since the Sackler family reportedly transferred assets valued at $1 billion offshore.
PURDUE PHARMA’S CHAPTER 11 BANKRUPTCY CASE
On September 15 & 16, 2019 in White Plains N.Y., Purdue Pharma & 23 affiliated debtors filed for a chapter 11 reorganization under the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Drain who presides over the case, issued an injunction on October 11, 2019 suspending lawsuits against Purdue Pharma and the Sackler family. The October 11th injunction puts a freeze on the above-mentioned subpoenas and letters rogatory, (& the claims against the Sackler family and Purudue Pharma at the Suffolk County N.Y. lawsuit). Furthermore, the first federal civil lawsuit about OxyContin & the opioid crisis is set down for trial tomorrow in Cleveland Ohio. As a consequence of Bankruptcy Judge Drain’s October 11th injunction, the Ohio trial will not include any claims against Purdue Pharma and the Sackler family.
Copyright 2019 Fred L. Abrams