18:24, February 27 205 0 abajournal.com

2018-02-27 18:24:06
During opioid press conference, Sessions says Justice Department will investigate GOP memo claims

Sessions made the disclosure during a press conference about the formation of a Justice Department task force to fight the opioid epidemic, Politico reports.

The GOP memo says a Russia dossier partly financed by the Clinton campaign was an “essential part” of an application for surveillance of a former campaign adviser to Donald Trump, but the Democratic connection was not disclosed.

“We believe the Department of Justice must adhere to the high standards in the FISA court and, yes, it will be investigated,” Sessions said. “And I think that’s just the appropriate thing.”

The subject of the press conference was the creation of a Prescription Interdiction & Litigation Task Force in the Justice Department, which will be known as the PIL Task Force. The task force will use federal civil and criminal remedies to target the unlawful practices of opioid manufacturers and distributors, report the Washington Post and CBS News. A press release is here.

The Justice Department will also file a statement of interest in a multidistrict action involving hundreds of lawsuits against opioid manufacturers and distributors. The statement will argue the federal government should be reimbursed for the costs it has incurred in the opioid epidemic.

PIL will examine existing lawsuits by state and local governments to examine what help, if any, that federal law can provide, according to the press release. The task force will also use criminal and civil actions to ensure that distributors and pharmacies are obeying Drug Enforcement Administration rules designed to prevent diversion and improper prescribing.

The Justice Department will target the opioid crisis from “every angle,” Sessions said.