Statement of Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman on Opioids Settlement
The Hennepin County Attorney's Office and Office of the Minnesota Attorney General announced $300 million obtained on behalf of the people of the state of Minnesota through opioid settlements at a joint press conference with Sen. Amy Klobuchar on Wednesday.
"These are funds that will go directly to local governments. The Hennepin County Attorney's Office helped unite local governments to achieve a mutual goal of ensuring that settlement funds will be paid directly to all Minnesota counties and several cities," Freeman said. "An unprecedented 75% of all money obtained through the settlement will go directly to county and city governments. This is among the highest local government allocations of settlement funds in the entire country."
"This money is going to support people who are on the front lines and need it the most - social services agencies in counties and people who have been harmed by reckless companies," Freeman continued.
"Our attorneys see the impacts of the opioid epidemic every day. Our prosecutors regularly see crimes related to opioids, ranging from drug crimes and theft to serious person crimes related to drug use. In child protection cases, opioids have led to addiction and overdoses, which have a serious and significant negative impact on children and families."
"I want to commend Attorney General Ellison," Freeman said, "for being a great partner to the counties and county attorneys in filing these lawsuits and settling these cases. Together we have advocated vigorously on behalf of the people of Hennepin County and the State of Minnesota. This is yet another example of the Office of the Attorney General being a revenue generator on behalf of the taxpayer - the settlements from this and other lawsuits far exceed the costs of the office. These opioids cases are just a small part of this revenue."