A federal jury in Cleveland found that the companies that own CVS, Walgreens and Walmart pharmacies were liable for contributing to the opioid epidemic in two Ohio counties, the first and potentially influential case among thousands filed against pharmacy chains.

Attorneys for Lake and Trumbull counties in northeast Ohio had argued the chains failed to stop pain pills from flooding the counties or stop false prescriptions from being filled.

The counties argued that by enabling the opioid crisis, the pharmacy companies created a public nuisance. Each county said the crisis cost them about $1 billion in costs related to law enforcement, social services and courts.

The verdict in the bellwether case is being closely watched by attorneys elsewhere as similar cases play out against pharmaceutical manufacturers and distributors.... Read More: WSJ