The investigation is to evaluate whether manufacturers have engaged in unlawful practices in the marketing and sale of opioids.
The coalition of attorneys general will use its arsenal of investigative tools, including subpoena power to secure documents and testimony, to determine if drug makers violated the law.
"This is a public safety and public health issue", Paxton said.
The State of South Dakota is proactively working to keep the opioid epidemic at bay.More news: Shooting in Virginia: What we know
Attorney General Herring has made combating the heroin and prescription opioid epidemic a top priority, attacking the problem with a multifaceted approach that includes enforcement, education, prevention, and legislation to encourage reporting of overdoses in progress, expand the availability of naloxone, and expand access to the Prescription Monitoring Program.
At his request, the PDMP was passed into law during the 2010 legislative session.
The State of South Dakota is now working on a Prescription Opioid Abuse Prevention Initiative and as part of that, the Attorney General's Office is a participating member of Opioid Advisory Committee.
"Certainly, prescription drug abuse has become a nationwide issue", Jackley said.More news: US Senate votes near unanimously for Russia, Iran sanctions
"When you look at what's going on across the nation we've been fortunate to only have, this a year ago, 51 overdose deaths which is a significant matter for a family or a community but we've escaped it so far", Jackley explained.
Prescription and illegal opioids account for more than 60 percent of overdose deaths in the U.S., a toll that has quadrupled over the past two decades, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.
"Far too many Virginians are still losing their lives and loved ones to the opioid crisis".
Denn's office did not reveal any specifics about the manufacturers being investigated, or much about the course of the investigation itself, only that the efforts have "been underway for some time".More news: Tightening Cuba restrictions, Trump again chips away at Obama's legacy
"The people peddling the drugs ripping apart our towns aren't only on our street corners", Attorney General Josh Shapiro said during a news conference in Harrisburg on Thursday.
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