Drug firm founder once among Arizona's richest billionaires

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Billionaire founder of Insys Therapeutics John Kapoor leaves U.S. District Court after being arrested earlier Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017, in Phoenix. (Source: AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin) Billionaire founder of Insys Therapeutics John Kapoor leaves U.S. District Court after being arrested earlier Thursday, Oct. 26, 2017, in Phoenix. (Source: AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
PHOENIX (AP) -

The drug company founder charged with leading a nationwide conspiracy to bribe doctors and pharmacists to widely prescribe an opioid cancer drug for people who didn't need it came to the U.S. for postgraduate studies and for a time was listed among Arizona's richest billionaires.

[READ MORE: Founder and former CEO of Insys Therapeutics arrested in Phoenix]

Forbes several years ago listed John N. Kapoor, the founder of Insys Therapeutics, as having a worth of $2.4 billion. That worth has fallen amid indictments of numerous fellow Insys executives. But Forbes still listed Kapoor's worth at $1.75 billion on Thursday as he went to U.S. federal court in the fraud and racketeering case.

[RELATED: Arizona attorney general files lawsuit against Chandler opioid manufacturer and 3 doctors]

Kapoor and some of his colleagues were charged with pushing prescriptions for the addictive drug the same day President Donald Trump declared the opioid crisis a nationwide public health emergency.

[SPECIAL SECTION: Opioid crisis in Arizona]

Associated Press writer Jacques Billeaud contributed to this report from Phoenix.

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