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Maryland charges opioid drugmaker with ’deceptive’ scheme

BALTIMORE — Maryland authorities say an Arizona-based drugmaker engaged in a nationwide scheme characterized by “extraordinary misconduct” to boost profits amid the coast-to-coast opioid epidemic.

Attorney General Brian Frosh announced Thursday that his office filed charges against Insys Therapeutics alleging multiple violations of a consumer protect law.

Insys makes a highly addictive opioid spray used to manage pain for adult cancer patients. But Frosh says Insys joined with local health care providers in a “calculated scheme” to target other patients seeking pain relief.

Frosh alleges that roughly 90 percent of prescriptions for the spray-based Subsys fentanyl written or filled in Maryland were for people who never should have been taking the drug.

Other U.S. states have sued Insys, some reaching settlements.

Insys did not immediately respond to a telephone call seeking comment.