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Insys former sales chief dressed as a bottle of fentanyl to boost sales

In 2015, executives from Insys Therapeutics played a parody video during the company’s national sales meeting. Employees rapped to the tune of A$AP Rocky’s “F**kin’ Problems” and encouraged sales staff to boost sales of its potent fentanyl spray Subsys. Toward the end of the video, the company’s former head of sales appeared dressed as a 1,600-microgram bottle of Subsys – the highest dosage available. In retrospect, it probably wasn’t a great idea. The video became evidence this week in a racketeering trial against five former Insys executives, including the Subsys suit-wearing sales manager Alec Burlakoff. Former Insys CEO Michael Babich ... Read More

Insys founder paid kickbacks to docs to prescribe its addictive fentanyl

Insys Therapeutics Inc.’s founder and four of its executives stooped to new lows to entice doctors to prescribe their pricey opioid spray Subsys, treating them to lavish dinners, putting them on its payroll, and even giving one top prescriber of the drug a lap dance, Assistant U.S. Attorney David G. Lazarus told a federal jury in Boston in the trial of former Insys chairman and founder John Kapoor. Kapoor, along with other company executives, is facing charges of using bribes and kickbacks to increase sales of Subsys, a highly addictive spray version of the opioid fentanyl. “This is a case ... Read More

Aetna’s Opioid Fraud Lawsuit Against Insys Allowed to Stand

Insys Therapeutics must face a lawsuit filed by Aetna accusing the drug company of duping the health care insurance corporation into paying claims for Subsys prescriptions when the potent opioid painkiller was prescribed for unapproved, off-label purposes. U.S. District Judge Cynthia Rufe in Philadelphia refused to toss Aetna’s complaint in an Aug. 23 ruling. The lawsuit against Insys is one of several similar lawsuits filed by health insurers who accuse the drug maker of defrauding them into paying for Subsys prescriptions that were not just inappropriate but dangerous. Insys manufactured Subsys, the brand name for fentanyl, as a last-resort opioid ... Read More

Insys sued for bribing doctors to prescribe powerful opioid Subsys

Drug company Insys Therapeutics bribed doctors to prescribe its powerful fentanyl spray Subsys for conditions in which it was not approved, allegedly costing the federal government millions of dollars, according to a complaint filed by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and six states. The whistleblower litigation involves allegations that Insys used deceptive practices to market its cancer pain treatment, including funneling money to doctors and nurse practitioners through fake speaking events in exchange for them writing prescriptions; finding jobs for family and friends of those who prescribed the drug; and funding strip club visits. Numerous Insys sales representatives have ... Read More

Insys sued for illegally pushing its powerful opioid Subsys

William Hemmings believed the sales representative with Insys Therapeutics Inc., when he said Hemmings was a “perfect candidate” for his company’s powerful opioid painkiller Subsys. Hemmings’ doctor had been treating him with “various narcotics and muscle relaxers” for a work-related injury that required multiple surgeries, but he was still in pain. After Insys sales representative Nick Patel visited Hemmings’ doctor, the physician suggested Hemmings try Subsys. In April 2015, Patel came to the doctor’s office and assured Hemmings that the fentanyl spray would relieve his pain in as little as five minutes, and that he could use it several times ... Read More

Insys rep’s opioid kickback trial pushed to September

A trial involving a former sales manager for drugmaker Insys Therapeutics Inc., accused of paying kickbacks to doctors to prescribe the company’s fentanyl-based opioid painkiller, has been pushed back to September, a Connecticut federal judge ruled. Both the government and Jeffrey Pearlman had requested a delay of the trial, originally set for February, after new discovery responses and possible state charges poured in. Pearlman was also scheduled for back surgery. The new trial date was set for Sept. 26, ample time for both parties to comb through hundreds of thousands of new documents, as well as for the Connecticut attorney ... Read More

NC sues Insys for illegally pushing opioid spray Subsys

North Carolina’s attorney general is suing drug maker Insys Therapeutics Inc., over allegations that the drug company paid kickbacks to doctors to prescribe its potent opioid Subsys to patients who didn’t meet the requirements for the medication, then lied to insurers to get them to cover the cost. Attorney General Josh Stein’s Consumer Protection Act lawsuit is one of several against Insys and its executives, including criminal racketeering and fraud charges in Massachusetts and civil and consumer protection claims in New Jersey. The drug company and its executives, who are not named in the North Carolina suit, are accused of ... Read More

Insys founder freed from ankle monitor for daily jogs

John Kapoor, billionaire founder of Insys Therapeutics, can rid himself of his cumbersome electronic monitoring device to take his daily jogs just so long as he doesn’t try to run out of the country, a Massachusetts federal judge ruled. Kapoor, who is facing charges that his company bribed doctors to needlessly prescribe his company’s fentanyl-based opioid spray, said the GPS-enabled device makes it “virtually impossible for him to run,” his attorneys said. The device “interferes with a lot of things, including jogging, but rest assured he’s not running from the case,” his attorneys said to U.S. Magistrate Judge Jennifer Boal. ... Read More

Insys founder resigns from board amid opioid scandal

The billionaire founder of Arizona-based Insys Therapeutics, John Kapoor, has resigned from the company’s board of directors following his arrest on charges he participated in a scheme to bribe doctors and mislead health insurance companies in an effort to boost sales of the company’s powerful opioid painkiller Subsys. Subsys is a highly potent, fentanyl-based spray that is only intended for breakthrough pain in cancer patients. Kapoor, Insys’ majority shareholder, resigned as chief executive officer in January after being charged with engaging in conspiracies to commit racketeering, mail fraud and wire fraud. Board members Patrick Fourteau, also resigned citing personal reasons. ... Read More

Insys founder arrested, charged with racketeering, fraud

The founder and chairman of a pharmaceutical company accused of using unscrupulous practices to push sales of its highly addictive cancer treatment to patients without cancer was arrested and charged with racketeering and fraud. John Kapoor joins six other Insys Therapeutics Inc. officials who have been charged in a scheme to bribe medical professionals to prescribe Subsys, a highly potent, fentanyl-based spray only intended for breakthrough pain in cancer patients. Kapoor is scheduled to appear in a Massachusetts federal court on Nov. 16. “In the midst of a nationwide opioid epidemic that has reached crisis proportions, Mr. Kapoor and his ... Read More