Government, Big Tobacco In Dispute Over Proposed Ads

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (AP) The Justice Department wants the largest cigarette manufacturers to admit that they lied to the public about the dangers of smoking, forcing the industry to set up and pay for an advertising campaign of self-criticism for past behavior. As part of a 12-year-old lawsuit against...

Connecticut Smoker Gets Another $15.7M Against R.J. Reynolds

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - (AP) A federal judge has awarded nearly $16 million in interest to a smoker who already had won $12 million against a tobacco company in the first such jury award in New England. Judge Stefan Underhill awarded about $15.7 million to Barbara Izzarelli, a Norwich resident who developed...

Tobacco Companies Make Payments Under Master Settlement Agreement

RICHMOND, Va. - (AP) The nation's top cigarette companies said Friday they have made their payments as part of the 25-year settlement in which some cigarette makers are paying states for smoking-related health care costs. Philip Morris USA, the nation's largest cigarette maker owned by Altria...

Federal Judge Denies Marlboro Medical Monitoring Class

SAN FRANCISCO - (Mealey's) A California federal judge denied class certification and court-ordered cancer screenings for long-time Marlboro smokers on April 18 and dismissed all claims except design defect and negligent design and testing ( Burt Xavier and James Franklin, et al. v. Philip Morris...

Cigarettes Will Carry Grisly New Warning Labels

RICHMOND, Va. - (AP) Rotting teeth and gums. Diseased lungs. A sewn-up corpse of a smoker. Cigarette smoke coming out of the tracheotomy hole in a man's neck. Cigarette packs in the U.S. will have to carry these macabre images in nine new warning labels that are part of a campaign . . . . Full version...

U.S. Supreme Court Denies Appeal Of $241 Million Tobacco Judgment

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (Mealey's) The U.S. Supreme Court has denied tobacco companies' appeal of a Louisiana state court order to fund a $241 million medical monitoring and smoking cessation program, according to a clerk of the court report issued June 27 ( Philip Morris USA Inc., et al. v. Deania...

Florida Court Reinstates Conspiracy/Concealment Claim Against 3 Tobacco Defendants

MIAMI - (Mealey's) A Florida state appeals court on Sept. 29 reversed summary judgment against a smoker's widow after finding that the state's Engle v. Liggett Group, Inc. (945 So. 2d 1246, 1277 [Fla. 2006]) case allows conspiracy/concealment claims against tobacco defendants even if the...

Federal Judge Blocks Graphic Cigarette Warnings

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (Mealey's) Saying graphic new cigarette pack warnings ordered by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration violate companies' First Amendment rights by compelling speech, a judge in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on Nov. 7 issued a preliminary injunction halting...

Judge Orders Tobacco Companies To Advertise Risks Of Smoking

WASHINGTON, D.C. - (Mealey's) A District of Columbia federal judge on Nov. 27 released the language tobacco companies will be required to include in corrective statements in newspaper and television advertisements, on their websites and in cigarette packaging to counteract what the judge found to...

FDA Announces Ban On Chinese Company’s ‘Bidi’ Type Cigarettes

ROCKVILLE, Md. — (Mealey’s) For what it says is the first time since the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act became law in 2009, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Feb. 21 ordered an end to the sale in the United States of a Chinese company’s “bidi” tobacco...

Illinois Appeals Court Reinstates $10 Billion ‘Light’ Cigarettes Verdict

MOUNT VERNON, Ill. — (Mealey’s) A $10.1 billion consumer fraud verdict stemming from Philip Morris USA Inc.’s marketing of “light” cigarettes was reinstated April 29 by Illinois' Fifth District Appellate Court ( Sharon Price, et al. v. Philip Morris Inc. , No. 5-13-0017...

Florida Federal Jury Awards $2.5 Million To Smoker With Lung Disease

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — (Mealey’s) A Florida federal jury awarded $5 million in compensatory damages May 15 to a woman who said three companies’ cigarettes caused chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, but the jury assigned 50 percent of the fault to the plaintiff ( Pauline Burkhart, et...

Florida Federal Jury Adds $2.5M In Punitive Damages For Smoker With Lung Disease

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — (Mealey’s) A Florida federal jury added $2.5 million in punitive damages Friday to $2.5 million in compensatory damages it had awarded May 15 to a woman who said three companies’ cigarettes caused chronic obstructive pulmonary disease ( Pauline Burkhart, et al....

Deceased Smoker’s Daughter Testifies About His Smoking In Florida Wrongful Death Case (Watch The Video)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla — (Mealey’s) The daughter of a deceased smoker testified in a wrongful death action in state court Aug. 19 that her father “was always smoking” and “was always trying to quit” ( Heather Irimi, et al. v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., et al. , No. 2008...

Deceased Smoker’s Daughter Testifies About Quitting Smoking Attempts In Florida Case (Watch The Video)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla.— (Mealey’s) The daughter of a deceased smoker testified in a wrongful death action in Florida’s 17th Judicial Court for Broward County Florida on Aug. 20 that her father was unable to quit smoking because he was addicted to cigarettes ( Heather Irimi, et al. v...

Closing Arguments Center On ‘Addiction’ Issue In Florida Smoking Case (Watch the Video)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — (Mealey’s) Closing arguments got under way Aug. 26 in Florida’s 17th Judicial Circuit Court for Broward County in a suit alleging that a longtime smoker’s March 2013 death was caused by smoking cigarettes ( Heather Irimi, et al. v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco...

Tobacco Companies Say Smoker Was Not Addicted In Florida Case Closings (Watch The Video)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — (Mealey’s) Closing statements by attorneys for three tobacco companies wrapped up on Aug. 27 in the Florida 17th Judicial Circuit Court for Broward County in a suit alleging that a longtime smoker’s death in March 2013 was caused by his smoking ( Heather Irimi...

Florida Jury Awards Smoker $26 Million In COPD Suit Against Philip Morris

FORT MYERS, Fla. — (Mealey’s) A jury in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida on Sept. 16 awarded $20 million in punitive damages to a woman who alleged that her chronic pulmonary obstructive disease (COPD) was caused by her years of smoking ( Judith Berger v. Philip...

Florida Judge Declares Mistrial In Tobacco Case Because Of Witness Statement (Watch The Videos)

VIERA, Fla. — (Mealey’s) A state court judge sitting in the Brevard County, Fla., 18th Judicial Circuit Court entered a mistrial on Sept. 26 after two weeks of trial in a wrongful death action brought by the widow of a longtime smoker because of a comment made by an expert witness for the...

Parties Dispute Nicotine Addiction Issue In Florida Suit’s Opening Statements (Watch The Videos)

TAMPA, Fla. — (Mealey’s) Trial got under way on Sept. 26 with opening statements in the Hillsborough County, Fla., 13th Judicial Circuit Court in a suit alleging that a woman’s death from lung cancer was caused by her 40 years of smoking ( James Lourie, et al. v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco...

Parties Offer Opening Statements In Florida Lung Cancer Suit (Watch The Videos)

MIAMI — (Mealey’s) The attorney for the widow of a man who died of lung cancer after smoking for more than 45 years told a jury in the Florida 11th Judicial Court on Oct. 31 that his client’s husband “needed to smoke” because he was addicted to nicotine ( Diane Schleider...

Florida Jury Awards $521,000 In Punitives To Smoker With COPD (Watch The Video)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — (Mealey’s) A woman who alleged that her chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and peripheral vascular disease (PVD) were caused by smoking cigarettes manufactured by R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. was awarded $521,345.08 in punitive damages by a jury in Florida’s...

Florida Jury Awards $450,000 In Punitives To Daughter of Smoker (Watch The Closing Statement Videos)

BRONSON, Fla. — (Mealey’s) The daughter of a smoker who died of lung cancer was awarded $450,000 in punitive damages Nov. 12 by a jury in Florida’s Eighth Judicial Circuit Court in a trial limited to the redetermination of damages following the striking of an earlier award of almost...

Florida Jury Awards $21 Million To Widow Of Smoker With Lung Cancer (Watch Closing Arguments Video Excerpts)

MIAMI — (Mealey’s) A jury in Florida’s 11th Judicial Circuit Court returned a $21 million verdict Nov. 18 for the widow of a man who died of lung cancer after smoking for 45 years ( Diane Schleider, et al. v. R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. , No. 13-2013-CA-006984, Fla. 11th Jud. Cir., Dade...

Florida Jury Awards Smoker’s Family $3M, Will Consider Punitive Damages Next (Watch Closing Arguments Video Excerpts)

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — (Mealey’s) A jury in Florida’s Fourth Judicial Circuit Court for Duval County on Nov. 24 awarded a total of $3,094,000 to the family of a woman who alleged that her death from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) was caused by her 35 years of smoking ( Andy...