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NORTH JACKSON PHARMACY, INC. v. CAREMARK RX

United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division


November 2, 2004.

NORTH JACKSON PHARMACY, INC., et al., etc., Plaintiffs,
v.
CAREMARK RX, INC., et al., Defendants.

The opinion of the court was delivered by: MILTON SHADUR, Senior District Judge

MEMORANDUM ORDER

This Court inherited this action via a 28 U.S.C. § 1404(a) transfer from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Alabama, where it had been part of a three-case package of putative class actions charging violations of Section 1 of the Sherman Act by a small group of pharmacy benefit managers ("PBMs"). Promptly after the transfer the defendants in this action (two related companies, one of which is alleged to be a PBM involved in the claimed antitrust conspiracy) filed a Fed.R. Civ. P. ("Rule") 12(b)(6) motion to dismiss the Second Amended Complaint ("SAC") with prejudice. This Court just as promptly set a briefing schedule, and plaintiffs' counsel have now timely filed, in response to the Rule 12(b)(6) motion, the second of what had been contemplated as a three-memorandum set.

Each side is represented by able counsel who have submitted thoughtful memoranda advancing their respective points of view. But plaintiffs' just-filed responsive memorandum has been accompanied by a photocopy of the 25-page opinion issued on October 13, 2004 by the transferor judge, Honorable Virginia Emerson Hopkins, rejecting a like Rule 12(b)(6) motion that had sought to dispatch the selfsame Second Amended Complaint in the two cases that were retained in the Alabama District Court.

  To repeat the meticulous analysis in Judge Hopkins' thorough opinion as a predicate for arriving at the same conclusion would be "[t]o gild refined gold, to paint the lily . . ." (William Shakespeare, King John act 4, sc. 2). And that, as the poet went on to say, would be "wasteful and ridiculous excess" (id.). There is no need for defendants' reply memorandum — instead the Rule 12(b)(6) motion is denied, and defendants are ordered to answer the SAC on or before November 16, 2004.

  Finally, a status hearing is set for 9 a.m. November 19, 2004. At that time the parties' counsel should be prepared to discuss issues relating to class certification and any other matters necessary to move this action forward on a suitably expedited basis.

20041102

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