A federal judge ruled Friday morning that Martin Shkreli, a former hedge fund manager convicted of securities fraud in 2017, must pay $64.6 million in fines to states that filed an antitrust lawsuit over his dramatic increase to the price of Daraprim, a life-saving drug, in 2015.
U.S. District Judge Denise Cote also barred Shkreli from working in the pharmaceutical industry again.
The ruling followed a weeklong bench trial in December.
Shkreli came under public scrutiny in 2015 when his pharmaceutical company Turing acquired Daraprim and raised the price from $13.50 a tablet to $750. Daraprim treats toxoplasmosis, an rare parasitic disease that can be deadly, and the price hike was widely criticized. Shkreli defended the move, saying that “if there was a company that was selling an Aston Martin at the price of a bicycle, and we buy that company and we ask to charge Toyota prices, I don’t think that that should be a crime.” In 2020, the Federal Trade Commission and seven states filed a lawsuit accusing Shkreli of blocking competition from generic drug companies by preventing them from accessing Daraprim to conduct testing in line with Food and Drug Administration regulations. The suit also claims Shkreli used exclusive supply agreements to limit the market availability of the drug’s active ingredients. In 2018, Shkreli was sentenced to seven years in prison after he was found guilty of defrauding investors.
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