CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — The nation's largest prescription drug distributor has lost its bid to keep a lawsuit out of a West Virginia county.

News outlets report a judge rejected McKesson's claim that it has no duty under state law to refuse to ship suspicious orders of prescription opioids and other powerful drugs to pharmacies in West Virginia.

U.S. District Judge David Faber sent Attorney General Patrick Morrisey's lawsuit against McKesson back to Boone County Circuit Court.

The lawsuit claims McKesson failed to take steps to stop massive shipments of prescription painkillers to the state. The West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources was among several plaintiffs.

According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Boone County had the third-highest prescription drug overdose death rate in the nation between 1999 and 2014.