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Latest $417 Million J&J Talc Case Tossed Out

Eva Echeverria, awarded $417 over talc use

MND, October 21, 2017 ~ Two months ago, Eva Echeverria, 63, sent the most powerful message yet to healthcare giant Johnson & Johnson over its talcum powder and a suspected link to ovarian cancer.

A Los Angeles jury awarded her $417 million in compensation and punitive damages following decades of talcum powder use.

She was suffering from end stage ovarian cancer and was not well enough to sit in her August defective product trial. She has since died.

Now a judge has thrown out that verdict, the highest yet awarded to plaintiffs seeking compensation over the talcum power/ovarian cancer link.

Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Maren Nelson granted a motion for a new trial agreeing with J&J that there was jury misconduct, errors at trial, an absence of malice by J&J, and that the damage award was excessive.

Reuters reports three of the 12 jurors, who were not in favor of finding the company liable, were improperly excluded from finding damages during the trial.

Echeverria’s attorney, Mark Robinson Jr. plans to appeal.

J&J’s FAVORABLE RULINGS

Jacqueline Fox, National Law Journal

This is the second ruling in favor of J&J this week.

On Tuesday, the $72 million jurors awarded to the late Jacqueline Fox was overturned in a St. Louis court. Fox was from Alabama and due to a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling on the proper venue for cases, J&J has been challenging plaintiffs in the St. Louis court who were not from Missouri.

Spokesperson Carol Goodrich said in a statement, “Ovarian cancer is a devastating disease – but it is not caused by the cosmetic-grade talc we have used in Johnson’s Baby Powder for decades. The science is clear and we will continue to defend the safety of Johnson’s Baby Powder as we prepare for additional trials in the U.S.”

from Beasley Allen law firm

At the Echeverria trial, jurors believed that Johnson & Johnson knew for decades about the risks of talc and ovarian cancer and awarded her $70 million in compensatory and $347 million in punitive damages, intended to send a strong message to J&J about its corporate behavior.

One pieces of evidence in the Echeverria trial was the fact that two other talcum powders, Spring Fresh and Angel of Mine, both contain warnings on their label about a risk of ovarian cancer.

Frequent application of talcum powder in the female genital area may increase the risk of ovarian cancer.”

“Medical evidence suggests that women who use talcum powder as a feminine hygiene product run a greater risk of developing ovarian cancer.”

Johnson & Johnson Baby Powder and its Shower to Shower powder, still have no warning on the label.

VERDICTS SO FAR

So far of the five cases heard in St. Louis, all but one has been decided for plaintiffs, delivering $307 million in favorable verdicts.

More than 14,000 women die every year from ovarian cancer which is very difficult to detect and has a low survival rate. There is no known cause but the American Cancer Society says, “some cancer-causing substances may enter the body through the vagina and pass through the uterus and fallopian tubes to reach the ovaries.”

This would explain how removing the uterus in a hysterectomy or blocking the fallopian tubes such as in a tubal ligation affects the ovarian cancer risk.

There are 4,800 pending talc/ ovarian cancer pending lawsuits against Johnson & Johnson in Missouri and California.  A year ago, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) established MDL No. 2738 in New Jersey to consolidate the growing number of talcum powder/ovarian cancer cases around the country.

Shawn Blaes and family, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Wednesday, a jury in California Superior Court began hearing the talcum powder trial of Tina Herford.

Hers is the first in the nation to claim that J&J’s talcum powders contain asbestos that led to her illness. Courtroom View Network is covering the Herford trial. Subscription is required (here).

This week the talc/ovarian cancer trial of the late Shawn Blaes got underway in St. Louis. She is from a suburb within St. Louis County.

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8 Comments

  1. Kitty says:

    2 b——! …one of them is an active member of AUGS. She refuses MRI of pelvis. All UA with culture and sensitivity come back negative. The pain is an ache……i hate her guts. Which one of us can afford to travel back and firth to the experts? Who of us are having menstrual cramps or Braxton Hicks?

    • Jane Akre says:

      Kitty just FYI, there are some good knowledgeable and caring docs who belong to AUGS, they just keep their head down and don’t speak up much!!!

      • Kitty says:

        Someday I will give details on my 2 AUGS people. I need $ to get somewhere now. I am in a profession that I am lucky I can be of use…even if I had to crawl in with a stick. I hate to loose this last job that i will ever have. But yes Jane…i get it. There are GOOD people. My husband kids me tHAT I ALWAYS FIND THESE PEOPLE. HE Says I have “NO mazel”

        • Bejah Blue says:

          Dear Kitty, You are of great “use” to all of us here my dear….feeling your pain…sending love and hugs, Bejah

  2. Bejah Blue says:

    JANE, The para below is from my law firm’s website. They do not appear to state the reclass to cat III. Please read and comment. Thanks. I am going to ask my local attorney to contact my counsel in NYC in this matter (my case). I am also preparing a letter to Johnson & Johnson and I am preparing email and letter to the surgeon who implanted me and UC and UCLA. I am waiting no more. Feel divinely inspired and fueled by recasting of my TRUST which I am doing at present. All of us need to make sure we have either a Trust and/or Will. Lets have a conversation about this.

    January 2012, the FDA reached out to 35 vaginal mesh manufacturers and requested data on the safety and effectiveness of vaginal mesh implants. The FDA also mandated that manufacturers conduct safety studies on transvaginal surgical mesh implants. Given these developments, there is a growing consensus that a transvaginal mesh recall should be issued.

  3. Bejah Blue says:

    OK, I want to know about this fu**ing “Judge”. “Absence of malice”???? WHAT???I want us to find out as much as possible about him. How do we do that Jane. I am in midst of other efforts right now…but tell me path and I will follow to research this pending appeal. Thx. Problem is most judges tend to be right wing fascist “As*h**es”!!!! I want dirt on this “individual” NOW. Bejah

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