Bayer AG faces a trial over its Roundup weedkiller wherein the ex-chief govt officer of its Monsanto unit will testify for the primary time as to what he knew in regards to the product’s most cancers dangers.
Jurors in Kansas Metropolis, Missouri, are slated to listen to opening arguments Tuesday within the trial of a lawsuit filed by a former Roundup person who blames the herbicide for inflicting him to develop non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Bayer, which acquired Roundup-maker Monsanto, has paid billions to settle tens of hundreds of instances, however nonetheless faces about 30,000 fits over the product.
Hugh Grant, Monsanto’s ex-CEO, was ordered by a choose to testify within the Missouri case and the state’s appeals’ courts upheld that ruling. It’s the primary Roundup trial outdoors California, the place the corporate misplaced three instances averaging nearly $50 million in damages for every client and defeated two different instances.
“He’s completely going to take the witness stand,” Jim Onder, a lawyer representing plaintiff Allan Shelton, mentioned in an interview.
Bayer mentioned that whereas it has sympathy for Shelton, intensive analysis helps its place that Roundup isn’t answerable for his sickness.
The corporate additionally mentioned in a press release that Grant’s testimony is pointless after he gave a five-hour deposition, however “we stay assured that his participation on this trial will solely strengthen our argument that the corporate depends on the conclusions of main knowledgeable regulators worldwide.”
Grant led St. Louis-based Monsanto from 2003 till Bayer paid $63 billion to purchase the chemical maker in 2018. In courtroom filings, Shelton’s attorneys mentioned he was the decision-maker about how Roundup was marketed and offered over these 15 years.
Grant’s activate the witness stand comes as Bayer officers await the U.S. Supreme Court docket’s choice on whether or not to listen to its enchantment in a Roundup case that might assist the corporate fend off hundreds of future fits.
Bayer — which already put aside greater than $11 billion to resolve Roundup fits – is able to add one other $4.5 billion if the excessive courtroom refuses to evaluation a $25 million award to a California plaintiff.
It desires the justices to search out federal herbicide rules trump state regulatory necessities. The corporate’s attorneys imagine such a ruling would go an extended method to dissuading future Roundup fits.
The case is Shelton v. Monsanto, 1816-CV17026, Missouri District Court docket for the sixteenth Judicial District (Kansas Metropolis).
Copyright 2022 Bloomberg.
A very powerful insurance coverage information,in your inbox each enterprise day.
Get the insurance coverage trade’s trusted e-newsletter