Judge dismisses investor class-action lawsuit against Merck
A federal judge in New Jersey has dismissed a securities class action lawsuit brought against Merck & Co. by investors over its one-time blockbuster drug Vioxx because the statute of limitations has run out, according to the Associated Press. Investors had charged Merck with providing misleading information or omitted details that Vioxx, its pain reliever, increased the risk of heart disease. They claim that the shares they purchased were thus inflated because they didn''t properly reflect the heart risks. The plaintiffs, who were investors who had bought Merck stock from May 21, 1999 through Oct. 29, 2004, filed the first Vioxx-related securities class-action lawsuit on Nov. 6, 2003. The lawsuits were later consolidated. Merck, based in Whitehouse Station, N.J., withdrew Vioxx from the market on Sept. 30, 2004 after the drug was linked to an increased risk of heart attacks. Merck still faces more than 27,000 liability lawsuits over Vioxx.