BOSTON (CBS/AP) — A defense lawyer says a former executive charged in a 2012 national meningitis outbreak did nothing to cause the deaths of patients.

Closing arguments began Thursday in the trial of Barry Cadden. The former president of the New England Compounding Center faces charges including murder.

Tainted steroids made by the company killed 64 people and sickened about 700 others in 20 states.

The prosecution said in closing that Cadden ran the company in an “extraordinarily dangerous” way that led to the deaths of 25 people.

But Cadden’s attorney said that although the outbreak is “a tragic death case,” it is “not a murder case.” He said prosecutors have not shown anything that Cadden did caused the deaths and are trying to blame Cadden for mistakes made by other employees.

Barry Cadden is the former president of the New England Compounding Center. He faces second-degree murder and other charges under federal racketeering laws.

During closing arguments Thursday, the prosecutor said Cadden repeatedly cut corners during the manufacturing process and didn’t take necessary steps to ensure the drugs were sterile.

(© Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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