Three East Tennessee counties have filed lawsuits against nearly 20 pharmaceutical companies, according to court files obtained by 10News.

Campbell, Greene and Johnson Counties have all filed lawsuits claiming the pharmaceutical companies have played a large role in the deadly opioid epidemic.

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The three counties claim the companies distributed highly addictive and dangerous opioids. The court files claim doctors were told by these companies that patients would not become addicted to these drugs.

The court files from the three counties also mention the prescriptions turned patients into drug addicts and for the profit of the pharmaceutical companies.

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Campbell County Mayor E.L. Morton said this is the next big step in healing the counties affected.

The Knox County District Attorney's Office said 294 people died of suspect overdoses in all of 2017. As of Jan. 6, 2018, at least six people have passed away from suspected drug overdoses.