After years of research and parliamentary finger-pointing, the Government of Greece still accuses Novartis of bribery and promises legal action.
The Health Ministry of Greece is drafting legal papers to sue Novartis for allegedly paying former officials and healthcare professionals to boost drug sales in the country.
Health department: “All efforts are being taken to make Novartis responsible and recompense Greece for its unlawful acts.”
Greece’s latest legal case against the pharma giants comes after a couple of years post Novartis settling international bribery charges in numerous countries, including Greece, for $345 million.
Greece’s litigation is ready and would be filed soon, Health Minister Thanos Plevris said Skai.
Novartis says that it “continues to work with Greek authorities”. Novartis also said that it “maintains the right to protect itself against any charges under Greek law”
The complaint exclusively includes U.S. prosecutors’ accusations. Plevris noted that the U.S. government received a settlement and believed Greece should too. He said that Greece may impose further damages.
Novartis confessed in a U.S. settlement that it bribed government officials of Greece and healthcare practitioners with medical events and an academic research to raise prescriptions of its medications, including eye treatment Lucentis.In the 10 year period of 2000 and 2010, and 2012-2015, the firm paid bribes.
Novartis whistleblowers apparently supplied the U.S. government bribery materials in early 2017. Greek authorities say Novartis inflated medicine prices via bribery, costing the government 3 billion euros.
The case progressed slowly throughout the years. Several Greek lawmakers accused of price-fixing and bribery have been exonerated.