We've been following this particular story for years, now. The larger narrative establishes that the sorts of shenanigans seen at Schering-Plough in 2007-2009 were actually just the latest installment of a much longer pattern of malfeasance (alleged), across at least three separate public pharmaceutical companies, involving Fred Hassan and/or Carrie Cox.
In this particular pending federal securities class action suit, now over seven years old, the plaintiffs allege -- among other things -- that Pharmacia's then CEO Fred Hassan, and then EVP Carrie Cox withheld, or downplayed, various portions of study data related to the blockbuster drug then being launched under the name Celebrex® (which drug, and company: Pharmacia) was later acquired by Pfizer -- garnering many tens of millions of dollars in payouts to Hassan, personally.
Yesterday, Pharmacia's lawyers were ordered to turn over all deposition transcripts that mention Celebrex in connection with discussions of gastrointestinal safety, thus:
September 27, 2010
Re: Garber, et al. v. Pharmacia Corporation, et al.
Civil Action No. 03-1519 (AET)
The Court has reviewed the parties’ recent correspondence regarding Plaintiffs’ Ninth Set of Requests for Production of Documents. The Court hereby grants Plaintiffs’ request for the production of deposition transcripts that refer to Celebrex with the following restrictions and requirements. First, the Court finds Plaintiffs’ request for all deposition transcripts that refer in any way, in the answers or questions, to Celebrex to be overbroad. The Court shall require Defendants to produce such transcripts only to the extent that they also discuss gastrointestinal safety. Second, the reasonable cost associated with redacting and producing the deposition transcripts shall be borne by Plaintiffs.
IT IS SO ORDERED.
/s/ Tonianne J. Bongiovanni
Tonianne J. Bongiovanni
United States Magistrate Judge
We'll keep you informed -- it may take a decade or more, but this one looks like it will stick to Teflon Fred and Lycra Carrie.