Valeant names new general counsel, says PR head to leave

August 8, 2016 11:01 AM EDT

A sign for the headquarters of Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc is seen in Laval, Quebec June 14, 2016. REUTERS/Christinne Muschi/File Photo

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(Reuters) - Canadian drugmaker Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc (NYSE: VRX) on Monday named a new general counsel and announced the departure of its public relations head.

Valeant, which has been under scrutiny for its business and accounting practices, appointed Christina Ackermann as executive vice president and general counsel.

Ackermann, who has served in various legal roles at Novartis AG (NASDAQ: NOVN), will replace Robert Chai-Onn.

Valeant also said Laurie Little, who has headed the company's investor and public relations functions for nine years, will leave in the coming months.

Last year, Valeant's top investor William Ackman faulted the company for a weak response to fraud allegations and underinvesting in its public relations. (

Valeant on Monday named Scott Hirsch as senior vice president, business strategy and communications.

Hirsh joins the company from Citadel Investment Group, where he oversaw equity investments and risk management decisions within the health care sector at Surveyor Capital.

(Reporting by Amrutha Penumudi in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

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