The Monsanto/Bayer Corp. Roundup Trial Just Got Very Interesting
Monsanto/Bayer Corp. has already faced multi-million dollar verdicts handed down in two other trials.
Now we have a multi-billion dollar verdict for a couple from California who claimed that the chemicals in Roundup weed killer caused their cancer.
This is the biggest jury verdict to date in the litigation over the dangers of glyphosate.
This award by the jury is certainly going to end up being reduced.
The U.S. Supreme Court has rules limiting the ratio of punitive damages to compensatory damages.
In this particular case, the jury awarded a total of $2 billion in punitive damages and $55 million in compensatory damages.
Alva Pilliod was awarded $18 million in compensatory damages and $1 billion in punitive damages.
Alberta Pilliod was awarded $37 million in compensatory damages and $1 billion in punitive damages.
The jury concluded Roundup had been defectively designed, Monsanto failed to warn of the cancer risks, and that the corporation acted negligently.
The chemical corporation is facing almost 14,000 additional lawsuits in U.S. courts over the cancer risks from exposure to the Roundup weedkiller.
This latest $2 billion jury verdict is the third consecutive trial that Monsanto/Bayer Corp. has lost regarding the highly suspect Roundup weed killer.
All three of the jury verdicts occurred in California courts.
Alameda County Superior Court in Oakland.
Bayer Corp. acquired Monsanto for $63 billion in 2018.
The next trial on deck in the litigation over Roundup and glyphosate is going to occur right in Monsanto’s backyard, St. Louis, Missouri.
It will be the first roundup case that will be heard by a jury outside of California.
Monsanto/Bayer Corp. said they are disappointed with the outcome of the trail and intend on appealing the jury verdict on the grounds that the decision is “excessive and unjustifiable.”
The corporation said the people awarded monetary damages in the latest jury verdict had a history of illness which was a big factor in their non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Monsanto/Bayer Corp. claims that decades of research studies by independent scientist have shown glyphosate and Roundup is safe for human use.
They also claim safety regulators worldwide have concluded glyphosate and Roundup is not carcinogenic.
A San Francisco state court jury in August 2018 awarded $289 million to a California groundskeeper, finding Monsanto’s glyphosate-based weed killers caused his cancer.
That award was later reduced to $78 million and is on appeal.
In March, a federal jury in San Francisco awarded $80 million to another California man after finding Roundup caused his cancer.
The company also said it would appeal that decision.
Lawsuits allege that Monsanto has always known about the cancer risks from glyphosate, but did not disclose this to people and instead attempted to influence scientists and regulators to receive favorable assessments of its products. Bayer denies those allegations.
The claims are for the most part based on a 2015 conclusion by the World Health Organization, which classified glyphosate as “probably carcinogenic to humans.”
The U.S. EPA, the European Chemicals Agency and other regulators have found that glyphosate is not likely carcinogenic to humans.
The EPA reaffirmed its earlier findings, saying glyphosate did not pose a risk to public health.
Answers to the legal questions in the prior cases will ultimately determine how this litigation proceeds.
There is also the question of the way juries in different parts of the country are going to react to the glyphosate evidence in upcoming trials.
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