Johnson & Johnson to pay $417 million in cancer lawsuit

23 August, 2017, 00:59 | Author: Kelly Sanders
  • Image credit Getty Images  BBC News

A jury ruled Monday that Johnson & Johnson (J&J) must pay a woman with ovarian cancer $417 million for failing to warn consumers of the purported dangers of the product.

A Lose Angeles jury has ordered the famous Johnson and Johnson company to pay a record breaking United States dollars 417 million to a woman who claimed that the talc used by the company's legendary baby powder leads to unsafe ovarian cancer if it is applied for feminine hygiene regularly.

Her case is simply the first among hundreds of others in California waiting to be decided.

Johnson & Johnson released a statement saying they would appeal the case.

The company has lost four out of five similar lawsuits.

Johnson & Johnson has faced a number of court cases over allegations that its talc-containing products cause ovarian cancer. The researcher behind that study directly advised a J&J doctor to place a warning label on their products.

Echeverria, from California, developed ovarian cancer as a "proximate result of the unreasonably risky and defective nature of talcum powder", she said in her lawsuit.

The company won a similar trial in March but lost another four causing J&J to award over $300 million in compensatory damages. Image credit The Ring of Fire Network

"We are grateful for the jury's verdict on this matter and that Eva Echeverria was able to have her day in court", one of the plaintiffs' lawyers said yesterday after the verdict was read in Los Angeles Superior Court.

According to Robinson, company's internal documents spanning over several decades prove that the company was aware of the risks of ovarian cancer as a result of regular usage of the powder. She said that she has used Johnson and Johnson baby powder since she was 11 but stopped in 2016 after seeing a news report of possible links to cancer, the LA Times reported.

One plaintiffs' expert showed that talc causes inflammation in human tissues, and that chronic inflammation can cause ovarian cancer.

The California woman, Eva Echeverria, had alleged that the company did not give adequate warning to its consumers about the potential cancer risks that the talcum powder may carry.

Johnson & Johnson took another black eye Monday in its ongoing effort to defend against claims that its flagship baby powder product is carcinogenic.

The company's statement quoted a report that said: "the weight of evidence does not support an association between perineal talc exposure and an increased risk of ovarian cancer".

The juries decision has been hotly anticipated after a recent court ruling stymied efforts to funnel out-of-state cases into the St. Louis court system.

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