Pennsylvania AG Shapiro Investigating Drug Makers Over Opioids

HARRISBURG, Pa. (NewsRadio 1020 KDKA/AP) – Pennsylvania is joining other states in an investigation into how manufacturers have marketed and sold opioids during an addiction crisis that killed thousands of state residents last year.

Attorney General Josh Shapiro said a majority of his counterparts in other states have joined the probe.

He’s not revealing details, including whether the investigation is civil or criminal, or who the targets are.

Shapiro says subpoenas are being used to obtain documents and testimony.

Shapiro tells the “KDKA Morning News” it is a serious crisis.

“We’re losing 13 Pennsylvanians a day in this crisis. It’s the number one accidental killer,” he said.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration says more than 4,600 Pennsylvanians died of drug overdoses last year, a jump of more than one third from 2015. Most of them were caused by heroin and other opioids.

“I think we have to look very closely at the way in which these opioid pain killers are marketed and distributed here in the United States and particularly here in Pennsylvania. There are many people that need it. People dealing with chronic pain…I don’t want to take it away from them, but I want to make sure that they’re not as easily accessible and that they’re marketed for their intended purpose,” Shapiro said.

Listen to the “KDKA Morning News” with Larry Richert and John Shumway weekdays from 5 to 9 a.m. on NewsRadio 1020 KDKA.

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(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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