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Canadian drug makers hit with $1.1B suit for pushing opioids despite risks

This Aug. 15, 2017, file photo shows an arrangement of pills of the opioid oxycodone-acetaminophen, also known as Percocet, in New York. Health Canada is making warning stickers and patient information handouts mandatory with all opioids dispensed at pharmacies or in doctor’s offices starting in October.THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP/Patrick Sison, File

TORONTO – Canadian drug makers are facing a $1.1-billion lawsuit for their role in the opioid crisis.

A proposed class action filed today accuses almost two dozen companies of enriching themselves at the expense of vulnerable patients.

The unproven suit alleges the companies illegally and deceptively promoted highly addictive opioids despite knowing the dangers.

The potent painkillers have killed thousands of Canadians in recent years.

The statement of claim filed in Ontario Superior Court names some of the biggest pharmaceutical firms in the country.

No statements of defence have been filed and the claims have not been tested in any court.