Texas AG Settles Consumer Protection Claims with Mobile Messaging Company
- Texas AG Greg Abbott announced a settlement with JAWA and numerous related entities resolving allegations that they improperly added expensive, unauthorized charges to consumers’ monthly mobile phone bills.
- The entities, which allegedly deceived consumers into subscribing to receive premium text messages on mobile phones without proper disclosures, will pay a total of $2 million to the State, repay customers for all unauthorized charges, and establish both a toll-free telephone number and a website to help all affected customers.
49 AGs, US DOJ Settle Drug-Pricing Marketing Claims with Abbott Labs
- 49 AGs and the federal government reached a settlement with Abbott Labs under which the company will pay the States $240 million to resolve Medicaid fraud claims, in addition to another $1.26 billion in criminal and civil penalties to the federal government. Abbott also agreed to pay $100 million to 45 States to resolve consumer protection claims related to the same allegations.
- Under the terms of the agreement, Abbott pleaded guilty to misbranding Depakote by training its sales force to promote the drug for uses not approved by the FDA, making this matter the latest in the series of cases involving so-called “off-label” marketing claims that we commented on last month.
Massachusetts AG Settles Natural Resource Damage Claims with General Motors Successor
- Massachusetts AG Martha Coakley announced that a federal bankruptcy court has approved a settlement of claims for environmental damages between the State and a successor entity established to handle claims unresolved by General Motors’s 2009 bankruptcy.
- The settlement, under which the entity will pay $875,000, resolves claims that GM’s operations at a former auto plant resulted in discharges of hazardous materials that contaminated a riverbed, banks, and surrounding wetlands, which impaired birds, animals, and other wildlife.
Missouri AG Announces Agreement with City of Springfield over Sewer System
- Missouri AG Chris Koster announced an agreement with the City of Springfield, Missouri, under which the city will spend $50 million over the next seven years to make major modifications to its sewer system.
- The agreement resolves allegations that untreated raw sewage was overflowing from the city’s wastewater collection system and from bypasses from the city’s two wastewater treatment plants, which risked contaminating drinking water and the local environment.