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Attorney General Ashley Moody wants opioid lawsuit finished ASAP

Ashley Moody
Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody speaks to reporters during "AP Day" in Florida's Capitol on Jan. 30, 2019. [Lawrence Mower/Times]

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody said Wednesday that she wants her office’s lawsuit against the nation’s largest opioid drug makers and sellers finished “as soon as possible.”

But when that might happen, and whether it would end with a jury trial or a settlement, is still up in the air.

Moody said she’s been meeting often with the lawyers leading her office’s lawsuit, which was filed last year, but hasn’t set a timeline for it.

The case against companies such as Oxycontin maker Purdue Pharma and Walgreens could result in millions — or even billions — of dollars for Floridians and communities suffering from an epidemic killing 17 people a day in the state.

Speaking to reporters at “AP Day” in Tallahassee, Moody reiterated that opioids is one of her top priorities. Her husband is a Drug Enforcement Agency agent, and she said she’s seen the effects of the epidemic firsthand while serving as a Hillsborough circuit judge.

“I literally had mothers cry on my shoulder,” she said.

Moody has also created a bipartisan opioid advisory group to come up with best practices to combat the epidemic, and she said Wednesday that she plans on asking the Legislature to create a permanent opioid panel.

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