As a paid corporate lobbyist, U.S. presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani helped Purdue Pharma defend its illegal activities to promote the drug Oxycontin, according to New York Times reporters Barry Meier and Eric Lipton. "As a celebrity, Mr. Giuliani helped the company win several public relations battles, playing a role in an effort by Purdue to persuade an influential Pennsylvania congressman, Curt Weldon, not to blame it for OxyContin abuse," they write. "Despite these efforts, Purdue suffered a crushing defeat in May ... when the company and three top executives pleaded guilty to criminal charges. ... Together, they paid $634.5 million in fines and payments. After years of denial and a high-profile public relations campaign, the company was forced to admit that it had misled doctors and patients."
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