Teva Pharm CFO says company did not conspire to fix prices

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries is seen during a news conference to discuss the company’s 2019 outlooks in Tel Aviv, Israel, February 19, 2019. REUTERS/Amir Cohen/File Photo

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Teva Pharmaceutical Industries’ chief financial officer on Sunday reiterated that the company has done nothing wrong in the wake of a price-fixing lawsuit filed by 44 U.S. states.

Mike McClellan told a conference in Israel that the suit was an amended one and not new, while stressing it was civil and not criminal.

“There have been no developments in this area,” he said. “We take these accusations seriously and we are going to defend ourselves.”

The Israeli company’s U.S. unit and 19 other drug companies conspired to divide up the market for drugs to avoid competing and, in some cases, conspired to prevent prices from dropping or to raise them, according to the complaint filed on Friday in the U.S. District Court in Connecticut.

Prosecutors said Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc had orchestrated to inflate drug prices – sometimes by more than 1,000% – and stifle competition for generic drugs.

“The allegations in this new complaint, and in the litigation more generally, are just that – allegations,” Teva said in a statement.

“Teva continues to review the issue internally and has not engaged in any conduct that would lead to civil or criminal liability.”

Teva’s Tel Aviv-listed shares were down nearly 11 percent in afternoon trading.

Reporting by Steven Scheer; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle

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