Published: Sat, July 14, 2018
Money | By Ralph Mccoy

Johnson & Johnson ordered to pay £3.6bn in talc asbestos cancer case

Johnson & Johnson ordered to pay £3.6bn in talc asbestos cancer case

According to medical experts appearing during the six-week trial in Missouri, the carcinogen asbestos naturally occurs and intermingles with the talc in the ground. Those plaintiffs will receive money from the $550 million in compensatory damages. He did say that he expects the punitive damages award to be halved during the appeals process due to a Missouri state law that caps such damages, but is confident the verdict would stand overall.

The jury's decision that J&J's baby powder caused ovarian cancer could be more significant in the long-run then the large payout, as its stock dropped 1.4% after Thursday's verdict against its renowned product.

The women also sued a unit of Imerys SA, which supplied the talc to J&J.

There had been six previous trials of talc powder-ovarian cancer lawsuits, with five ending in plaintiff victories and jury awards in the tens of millions of dollars.

The women claimed their ovarian cancer was caused by exposure to asbestos allegedly found in the baby powder.

The charity Ovacome says the evidence for a link is weak but even if talc does increase the risk of ovarian cancer, studies suggest it would be only by around a third. The damages awarded in the latest trial relate to claims of cancer linked to asbestos after the women used baby powder and other products over several decades.

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Talc, the softest known mineral, is sometimes contaminated by naturally occurring asbestos. Following that case, multiple women came forward and Johnson & Johnson is now facing around 9,000 cases regarding its talcum powder. It did not find asbestos in any of them. He said company knowledge of the asbestos dates back more than 40 years. The company suppressed the truth ... They need to know what's going on. "Don't let them get off".

J&J denied any contamination with asbestos or any rigged testing. "Does that make common sense?"

Pharmaceutical giant Johnson & Johnson must pay damages of $4.7 billion to a group of women who claim the company's talc products made them develop ovarian cancer, a court has ruled.

She said the case was overwhelmed with "prejudice" because each plaintiff was awarded the same $25 million "irrespective of their individual facts", according to Bloomberg. The company said the "multiple errors present in this trial were worse than those in the prior trials which have been reversed".

The lawyer for the 22 women in this most recent case said in a statement following the ruling that Johnson & Johnson should pull its product "before causing further anguish, harm, and death from a awful disease".

Along with jurisdictional arguments, Beisner said the company would continue to put forth its case that scientific studies overwhelmingly show talc itself is safe and the company's talc-based products never contained asbestos. However, Mark Lanier, a lawyer for the women suing, said both the agency and the company used flawed testing methods, preventing them from detecting the possible presence of asbestos fibers.

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