Judge Refuses to Toss $9 Billion Verdict in Pharmaceutical Bellwether Case

August 29, 2014

In a case that sets the tone for future litigation regarding drugmaker liability, U.S. District Judge Rebecca Doherty in Lafayette, Louisiana rejected a bid by Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. and Eli Lilly & Co. to toss a $9 billion judgment against over claims that the companies did not properly disclose the cancer risks of their Actos medicine.

The jurors in the case deliberated just over an hour before delivering the verdict, which may be the second-largest in the U.S. in 2014.

Both Takeda and Lilly disagree with the ruling citing a 10-year study conducted with the University of Pennsylvania which found no link between the drug and the alleged damages.

The companies have pledged to pursue all remaining avenues, including appeal, at which phase the verdict is likely to be overturned since “the U.S. Supreme Court has said such bad-conduct awards must be proportional to compensatory damage verdicts that underlie them.”

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