UPDATED: Pfizer Settles Trovan Case for $75M; Nigerian Kleptocrats to Get $40M

Last Updated Jul 29, 2009 3:11 PM EDT

It's official: Pfizer has settled the Nigerian Trovan case for $75 million. Nigerian kleptocrats will probably take about $40 million of that settlement, according to the deal structure described by Reuters.

BNET noted the settlement and the deal price back in March. Pfizer said that report was "not accurate," but, er ... that's exactly what happened.

Back story: The case stems from tests Pfizer did in 1996 during a meningitis outbreak in the African nation. Eleven children died. Trovan's use was restricted in the U.S. and banned in Europe. The events may have inspired the book and movie, The Constant Gardener. Here's how the $75 million will break down:

  • $35 million of the settlement is slated to go to a fund that would provide payments to eligible people who participated in the Trovan study.
  • $30 million of the settlement would be set aside for healthcare initiatives chosen by the Kano State government.
  • $10 million of the settlement would be used to reimburse Kano State for legal costs associated with the lawsuit.
As the latter two categories of money place $40 million in the hands of Nigerian officials and their lawyers, you can probably guess what will happen to it. BNET noted here and here that Nigerian officials are already maneuvering to maximize their chunk of the payout.

UPDATE: Pfizer says there will be some oversight on the Kano State initiatives:

Kano State and Pfizer will name a separate six-member board to oversee the $30 million allocated to support health initiatives designated by Kano State.