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Martin Shkreli Loses Effort to Pause Antitrust Suit Over Daraprim Until He’s Out of Jail

Ex-pharmaceutical executive Martin Shkreli speaks to the press in front of U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York with members of his legal team after the jury issued a verdict on Aug. 4, 2017.

Martin Shkreli cannot stop discovery in an antitrust suit that could lead to his lifetime ban from the pharmaceutical industry until his release from prison, scheduled for more than two years from now, a federal judge ruled.

“The public interest weighs strongly against any unnecessary delay of this litigation,” U.S. District Judge Denise Cote ruled on Friday.

“Shkreli has not shown ‘good cause’ for a stay of this complex litigation,” the ruling states. “This action is brought by the federal government and several states. The parties and the public have a significant interest in resolving the issues raised by [state and federal regulators’] claims with due expedition. The issues principally arise from events that began years ago, in 2014.”

The Federal Trade Commission and seven state attorneys general allege Shkreli conspired behind bars to keep the price of the live-saving drug Daraprim jacked up 40-fold, an act that earned him the nickname “Pharma Bro” roughly half a decade ago.

“The core of the allegedly anti-competitive conduct underlying the plaintiffs’ claims appears to remain ongoing. Should the plaintiffs prevail in this litigation, the impact on the generic drug market and consumers of pharmaceuticals would be prompt and significant,” the judge said.

Shkreli is scheduled for release in Sept. 2023, but he could be released to a halfway house as soon as September of this year, due to with he earned from participating in certain prison programs, his consultant says.

This is a developing story…

Read the ruling below:

[Image via Spencer Platt/Getty Images]

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Law&Crime's senior investigative reporter and editor Adam Klasfeld has spent more than a decade on the legal beat. Previously a reporter for Courthouse News, he has appeared as a guest on MSNBC, BBC, NPR, PBS, Sky News, and other networks.