Insys Ordered to Pay $225 Million to Settle Fraud Charges

Updated: June 5, 2019 / 5:46 p.m.

During the settlement, Insys Therapeutics admitted to bribing doctors to prescribe their opioid painkiller.


Prosecutors claim that Insys was using kickbacks and other illegal marketing methods to boost sales of Subsys considerably, which is an under-the-tongue spray that is used to treat pain in adult cancer patients. The spray contains fentanyl, which is a powerful opioid that is 100 times stronger than the drug morphine.


The settlement involving the company followed the conviction held by a federal jury in Boston on May 2, which accused five former Insys executives, including founder and former billionaire John Kapoor, of racketeering charges for contributing to the nation’s opioid epidemic.


Wednesday’s settlement is calling for the operating unit, Insys Pharma, to plead guilty to a total of five mail fraud counts.


The Chandler, Arizona-based company is said to forfeit $28 million, pay a $2 million fine and alo pay $195 million to settle charges it defrauded the government under the False Claims Act.


“For years, Insys engaged in prolonged, illegal conduct that prioritized its profits over the health of the thousands of patients who relied on it,” U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling in Massachusetts said. “Today, the company is being held responsible.”