Bucks County Negotiates Settlement in Retirement Fund Fraud Suit
A Bucks-led class action lawsuit against the pharmaceutical company Endo International for defrauding the Bucks County Employees Retirement System and other investors has reached a $63.4 million settlement it was announced last week.
Attorneys in the case filed notice of the settlement agreement Friday in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
If approved, the settlement will allow the county retirement system to recoup some funds lost as a result of the Malvern-based company’s misleading business practices. The final amount of the $63.4 million settlement that the county will recover as lead plaintiff of the class has not yet been calculated.
“This administration is committed to combatting fraud, protecting consumer rights, and pursuing recovery of funds for our employees’ retirement system,” said Bucks County Commissioner Diane M. Ellis-Marseglia, who serves as chair of the Retirement Board. “Bucks County government is proud of both the outstanding employee retirement benefits we offer, and the vigilance of our legal counsel, and we will always seek to hold accountable anyone who defrauds us.”
The suit against Endo alleged the company committed securities fraud by engaging in inherently risky and unstable generic drug pricing practices, and failed to disclose those practices and other key information to investors. When those practices caused the market value of Endo’s securities to plummet, class members suffered hundreds of millions of dollars in losses and damages.
Bucks County – which sustained the largest loss of any class member – was appointed in February to serve as lead plaintiff in the class action. As lead plaintiff, the county oversaw an enormous legal effort, including a massive fact discovery and contentious litigation over whether a class of investors should be certified in the case.
“With this recovery, Bucks County is holding Endo accountable for the harm it caused investors, including the Retirement Fund, concerning its massive generic drug price increases,” said County Controller Neale Dougherty, who serves as Secretary of the Bucks County Employees Retirement System Board.
The county was also appointed on Thursday to serve as co-lead plaintiff, together with the Delaware County Employees Retirement System, in a securities fraud class action against AdaptHealth Corporation.
Investors in that case, including Bucks and Delaware counties, allege they suffered investment losses as a result of false and misleading statements from AdaptHealth about its financial performance.
The Bucks County Retirement Board, which administers the retirement fund, is composed of Marseglia, Dougherty, County Treasurer Kris Ballerini, and county Commissioners Bob Harvie and Gene DiGirolamo.
The law firms Saxton & Stump and Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP, under the supervision of the Bucks County Law Department, represented the retirement board’s interests in the Endo litigation.