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Oklahoma Sues After $890K Worth Of Ventilators Never Arrived

Oklahoma’s attorney general has filed a lawsuit against a ventilator manufacturer, after it failed to deliver during the outset of the pandemic.

Attorney General Mike Hunter’s office announced the lawsuit Tuesday. It alleges that A & K Distributors, a pharmaceutical company based in Puerto Rico with a presence in eastern Oklahoma, failed to deliver 40 ventilators to the state health department. The department made the order in April 2020, and paid the company nearly more than $890,000.

The lawsuit alleges that by June, only two ventilators had been delivered. It states that, after some back and forth and more deliveries, Oklahoma health officials returned all ventilators and canceled the order. After that, officials demanded a refund, which the lawsuit states never came.

"It is unlawful for any company to behave this way," Hunter said in a statement. "It shouldn’t take the state pulling the order and threatening a lawsuit to get our products."

The lawsuit, filed in Oklahoma County District Court, is asking for that refund and for attorneys costs.

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Catherine Sweeney reports for StateImpact Oklahoma, focusing on health.
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