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(Bloomberg News photo)
(Bloomberg News photo)

Johnson & Johnson loses $25M talc verdict

The New York jury verdict for plaintiff Donna Olson and her husband includes only compensatory damages. The jury will return next week to consider possible punitive damages.

J&J is facing more than 14,000 claims that its talc products caused ovarian cancer or mesothelioma, a rare cancer linked to asbestos exposure. The company denies its products ever contained the carcinogen and argues talc doesn’t cause the life-threatening illnesses. Olson has mesothelioma.

The company’s record at trial has been mixed. It lost a $29 million jury award in a California mesothelioma case March 13 but won a New Jersey trial on March 27, the same day it settled three cases. J&J also won in California on April 5. Another trial is ongoing in California as well.

J&J will appeal, said Kim Montagnino, a company spokeswoman. “This trial suffered significant legal and evidentiary errors — one of the most egregious being the demonstrably false testimony from the plaintiff’s central expert,’’ she said.

The case is Olson v. Brenntag, 190328/2017, New York Supreme Court (Manhattan).

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