Top DEA official resigns after report on consulting work

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A top U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration official has resigned from his office after reporting from the Associated Press on his previous work for the pharmaceutical industry.

Louis Milione, the former principal deputy administrator for the DEA, previously worked for four years as a consultant to large pharmaceutical companies including Perdue Pharma, according to the AP’s reporting.

Perdue Pharma has been heavily associated with the nation’s opioids epidemic as it launched the drug OxyContin, which has been linked to the start of the crisis itself. 

Milione’s work for Perdue involved a $600-per-hour payment to help the company navigate legal challenges from states like Ohio and Oklahoma because of their marketing of OxyContin.

He also worked for the U.S.’s fourth-largest wholesale drug distributor, Morris & Dickson, testifying for them during the company’s attempts to continue to supply painkillers to hospitals and pharmacies after a federal judge found it had not flagged thousands of suspicious orders during the opioid crisis, not wanting to lose its license to do so.  

Milione began serving as DEA Administrator Anne Milgram’s foremost deputy in 2021 and previously worked at the agency for 21 years until 2017.

In his time away from the agency, he began a career as a consultant to some companies that he had previous regulating authority over. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Tags Anne Milgram DEA Louis Milione Morris & Dickson opioid epidemic OxyContin Perdue Pharma

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