Monsanto, the manufacturer of popular weed killer Roundup has lost another case. Cancer patients across the country are suing Monsanto alleging that Roundup gave them cancer. Three cases have gone to trial and all three verdicts have been in favor of the plaintiffs.
A subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson, Ethicon, was hit with a $120 million verdict by a Pennsylvania jury. The lawsuit arose from medical mesh device which was implanted in the plaintiff during a 2008 procedure. The plaintiff, a 68-year-old woman, argued that she suffered from chronic pelvic pain and urinary tract infections as a result of the mesh. She was required to undergo a surgery to remove the mesh. Despite efforts by doctors, the surgery to remove the mesh was unsuccessful, her attorneys stated.
On April 12, 2019, the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) announced that it was recalling all models of the Fisher-Price Rock 'n Play sleeper after reports that it was linked to over 30 infant deaths since the product was released in 2009. Customers are instructed to immediately stop using the product and contact Fisher-Price for a refund or voucher. The recall affects over four million products. The recall comes a week after the CPSC and Fisher-Price issued a joint warning in which they reported ten infant deaths in connection with the product. According to the joint statement, the deaths occurred after an infant three months of age or older rolled from their back to their stomach or side while the infant was unrestrained in the seat. At that time, the company recommended that consumers stop using the sleeper when an infant reached three months of age or as soon as the infant exhibited rollover capabilities.
Fisher-Price has announced a recall of 4.7 million Rock 'n Play Sleepers. The recall is for all models of the infant rockers. The recall states that consumers "should immediately stop using the product and contact Fisher-Price for a refund or voucher." It is estimated that over 30 infant fatalities have occurred in the Rock 'n Play Sleepers, after infants rolled over while unrestrained, or under other circumstances.
On February 1, 2019, a jury ordered Johnson & Johnson to pay $41 million to a Pennsylvania couple after the woman was injured by vaginal mesh. The woman, Suzanne Emmett, was implanted with the mesh in early 2007. Not long after, Emmett began experiencing complications with the mesh, when it began eroding through her soft tissues. She experienced discomfort, bleeding, infections, painful sex, and other symptoms. Despite having nine surgeries, in an attempt to correct the problems, Emmett continues to suffer from scarring and other permanent problems to this day.
A Missouri judge has recently upheld the award of 4.7 billion dollars in damages to twenty-two victims of ovarian cancer against Johnson & Johnson. This case stems from Johnson & Johnson having produced talc powder for decades, encouraging its use in women and children, all the while knowing of its contamination with asbestos. Company communications reveal both Johnson & Johnson's knowledge of the contamination, and of the health threats posed by asbestos. Citing the "reprehensible conduct" of the manufacturer, the judge upheld the judgment as being supported by the evidence adduced at trial.
Throughout the country, including several cities in Texas, e-scooters are the newest alternative to the usual forms of public transportation. E-scooters are dockless electronic scooters. These scooters allow users to rent them by smartphone app and the rider can leave the scooter wherever they want when they are done. The scooters can travel as fast as 15 miles per hour. The e-scooter companies contend that the scooters offer users an environmentally friendly and efficient means of transportation. However, as the e-scooters increase in popularity, so have safety concerns for both users and pedestrians.
On April 29, 2018, Russell Lane Mattison Jr. tried a liquid nitrogen-infused cereal called Dragon Breath at a kiosk inside a mall. After several bites, he experienced sudden and intense pain and his mouth filled with blood. Over the next several weeks, Mr. Mattison had difficulty eating and drinking due to sores on the inside of his cheek. Mr. Mattison filed suit.
Dwayne Johnson, 46, sued Monsanto at the Superior Court of California, alleging that the popular weed killer Roundup gave him terminal cancer. Johnson applied Monsanto's Roundup weed killer 20 to 30 times per year while working as a groundskeeper for a school district near San Francisco. He testified at trial that while using the product he had two prior incidents in which he was soaked with the product. In 2014, he was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. The suit alleged that harmful contact with Monsanto's product caused the underlying cancer. After three days of deliberations, the San Francisco jury awarded Johnson about $39 million in compensatory damages and $250 million in punitive damages.
The Environmental Protection Agency scrutinizes chemicals before approving their use for the public, but when the manufacturer deliberately provides falsified data or hides the known hazards as a California jury recently decided, the results for the public are tragic, and the judgment against the manufacturer is costly. DeWayne Johnson is the first of hundreds of litigants nationwide to be heard in court for their claims against Monsanto, the manufacturer of RoundUp, and is currently dying from his Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma (NHL). Years of exposure to RoundUp were found to be a significant contributing factor. The cost to uninformed consumers significantly exposed to RoundUp has been the development of cancers including NHL and Multiple Myeloma (a bone cancer). This verdict has paved the way for what promises to be years of contentious litigation for Monsanto and potentially extreme costs for their product.