Bayer loses appeal over ruling its weedkiller causes cancer

Bayer loses appeal over ruling its weedkiller causes cancer

Bayer AG’s Roundup woes escalated as it lost another appeal to a jury verdict finding its weedkiller causes cancer, the company’s third consecutive court appeals loss for them. cases that have been tried.
A California appeals court in San Francisco refused to overturn the 2019 verdict in which a jury awarded more than $ 2 billion to a couple who claimed to have fallen ill after using the herbicide for more than three decades. It was the eighth largest product failure award in US history. The appeals court left intact the trial judge’s decision to reduce the compensation to $ 86.7 million.

The move comes after Bayer, based in Leverkusen, Germany, recently set aside an additional $ 4.5 billion to process thousands of Roundup lawsuits, bringing its reserves for cases to more than $ 16 billion. The company also said its Monsanto unit will remove the current version of Roundup from the U.S. lawn and garden market in 2023.

The drugs and chemicals giant inherited the legal storm over Roundup with its $ 63 billion buyout of St. Louis-based Monsanto in 2018, a deal led by chief executive Werner Baumann at the start of his tenure. . Monsanto started making Roundup in the 1970s.

“We do not agree with the court’s ruling as the verdict is not supported by either trial evidence or the law,” Bayer said in an emailed statement. “Monsanto will be examining its legal options in this case. “

A fourth Roundup lawsuit began last week in state court in San Bernardino, California.

Bayer said it plans this month to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to take up a separate case it lost in 2019 and rule that the company should be absolved of any wrongdoing, because federal regulators discovered that glyphosate was not carcinogenic.

Latest California appeal stems from an Oakland jury finding that Roundup exposure caused Alva and Alberta Pilliod’s cancer and that Bayer should pay the married couple $ 2 billion in return. punishment because Monsanto covered the health risks of the herbicide. The trial judge determined that the punitive damages were far too high.

The appeals court ruled that the amended punitive damages were justified because the Pilliods provided “substantial evidence from which the jury could infer that Monsanto acted with willful disregard for the safety of others” in the part of its handling of the weedkiller.

The decision is “well reasoned and correct,” said Mike Miller, an attorney representing the Pilliods, in an email. “Monsanto deserves to be punished for hiding the truth about Roundup for decades. “

The case is Pilliod v. Monsanto, A158228, California Court of Appeals, First District (San Francisco).


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