This article was originally published in The Herald-Dispatch.
HUNTINGTON — An attorney representing Cabell County and 700 others in a federal opioid lawsuit says he plans to seek $500 million from three drug firms for the county’s recovery efforts from the opioid epidemic and a plan has been created on how the money generally would be spent.
Huntington-based attorney Paul T. Farrell Jr. says any money from the “Big Three” drug distribution companies — AmerisourceBergen, McKesson and Cardinal Health — via trial or settlement would be placed in a trust fund controlled by a board comprised of elected officials and other professions who will decide how the money will be allocated by following a plan outlined by local professionals.
Farrell met with The Herald-Dispatch editorial board Friday, held as Farrell shifts his attention more on lawsuits filed by Cabell County and Huntington after reaching a $215 million settlement with the same companies in Summit and Cuyahoga counties in Ohio last week in cases with similar allegations to Cabell County and Huntington’s claims.
With those two cases settled, Cabell County and Huntington are now preparing for trial and could be the first of more than 3,000 cases to go to trial in the country. Farrell said Cabell County’s claims are worse than those of the Ohio counties and he believes the area deserves money to reflect that.
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