Johnson & Johnson to Fight $1.2 Billion Fine

Said its antipsychotic drug Risperdal complied with all laws and regulations

Johnson & Johnson ( IW 1000/54) on April 11 that it would fight an Arkansas judge's order to pay a $1.2 billion fine for deceptively marketing its antipsychotic drug Risperdal.

Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a J&J subsidiary, said it was ordered to pay the fine, despite having provided evidence during a trial that the company had complied with all laws and regulations.

"We are disappointed with the judge's decision on penalties. If our motion for a new trial is denied, we will appeal," said Teresa Mueller, a Janssen spokeswoman.

Janssen noted that Arkansas Medicaid, the state's health care program for the poor, spent $8.1 million on prescriptions for the drug, generically known as risperidone, which treats schizophrenia and bipolar mania, during the period being examined.

"The state did not show any Arkansas patient was ever harmed by using Risperdal, that any Arkansas physician or Arkansas Medicaid was ever misled by the drug's label or package insert, or that the state ever paid for a Risperdal prescription that was not properly written and eligible for reimbursement," Mueller said.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2012

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