New York, states reach $700 mln settlement with Reckitt over opioid probes

Oct 23 (Reuters) - New York and five other states have reached a $700 million settlement deal with Reckitt Benckiser over allegations that the drug distributor improperly marketed a drug to treat opioid addiction, New York Attorney General Letitia James said on Wednesday.

Reckitt in July agreed to pay up to $1.4 billion to resolve U.S. claims that its former pharmaceuticals business Indivior before it was spun out carried out an illegal scheme to boost sales of an opioid addiction treatment, Suboxone.

Indivior in April was indicted and accused of deceiving doctors and healthcare benefit programs into believing Suboxone Film, itself a form of opioid, was safer and less susceptible to abuse than similar drugs.

As part of the agreement, New York's Medicaid program will receive more than $71.9 million in recoveries, with more than $39.9 million being returned to New York State, James said. ( (Reporting by Manojna Maddipatla in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)