Eli Lilly Agrees to Pay $1.4 Billion in Criminal and Civil Penalties for Illegally Marketing Zyprexa

On January 15, 2009, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced a landmark settlement of criminal and civil charges against Eli Lilly for illegally marketing Zyprexa to doctors for unapproved use by elders and children. The company agreed to pay a record $1.415 billion in criminal and civil penalties.

Zyprexa is a dangerous antipsychotic medication that is often prescribed to drug elderly nursing home residents with dementia.

The U.S. DOJ accused Eli Lilly of targeting its illegal marketing of Zyprexa to doctors who treat the elderly in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. According to DOJ, Eli Lilly did so despite lack of FDA approval for this purpose and known severe side effects for this population. Reportedly, Eli Lilly promoted use of Zyprexa by claiming it would help facilities sedate residents who would otherwise require more care.

DOJ Press Release on Eli Lilly (pdf)

Criminal Complaint

Guilty Plea Agreement

Corporate Integrity Agreement

Settlement Agreement

Government’s Memorandum for Entry of Plea and Sentencing

California Attorney General Brown’s press release on Eli Lilly Settlement

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