OKLAHOMA CITY – Attorney General Mike Hunter today released the following statement after Supreme Court Chief Justice Noma Gurich ruled against the defendants in the state’s trial against the nation’s leading opioid manufacturers, requiring the companies to meet all current deadlines.
Today’s ruling was given in response to Purdue Pharma’s appeal of District Judge Thad Balkman’s ruling on Friday to not delay the May 28 trial date for 100 days, as argued by defendants in the case.
The defendants claim they cannot meet the current deadlines set forth by the district judge.
Attorney General Hunter said despite the continued attempts at delaying the trial, the state is ready for its day in court.
“By denying the defendant’s stay, Chief Justice Gurich has kept our case on track,” Attorney General Hunter said. “We look forward to making our oral arguments next week, where we will show that the state has continuously met deadlines, while the companies, with hundreds of attorneys on the case have regularly sought to detour and delay the judicial process. Their actions should not be rewarded with more time to comply with court orders. Every day the trial is delayed, we will lose more Oklahomans to prescription opioid overdoses. This trial must proceed on schedule in order to stem this tragic epidemic.”
Oral arguments at the Oklahoma Supreme Court are scheduled for Wednesday, March 20 at 10:30 a.m. Justices will take the arguments under advisement until they meet on Monday, March 25 to deliberate behind closed doors as to whether or not to delay the trial for 100 days.