SOURCE: Williams Kherkher

Williams Kherkher

May 31, 2016 11:50 ET

Williams Kherkher Law Firm Secures $46.5M Verdict Against Monsanto in PCB Lawsuit

ST. LOUIS, MO--(Marketwired - May 31, 2016) - On Wednesday, May 25, a St. Louis jury awarded $46.5 million to three plaintiffs in a lawsuit against Monsanto and three other companies. The lawsuit (Benito Walker, et al., v. Monsanto Company, et al., Case No. 1122-CC09621-01, Circuit Court of the City of St. Louis, State of Missouri) claimed that Monsanto and the other defendants were aware of a link between polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and non-Hodgkin lymphoma, yet continued to market the chemical compounds as safe until the EPA banned the use of PCBs in the late 1970s.

The jury verdict, a 10-2 decision, awarded $17.5 million to the three plaintiffs in the case and imposed an additional $29 million in punitive damages against Monsanto and the other defendants -- Solutia, Pfizer, and Pharmacia. The plaintiffs' lawyer, Steven Kherkher of Williams Kherkher Law Firm in Houston, Tex., responded to the verdict stating, "This is the future. People don't know that PCBs cause cancer and that Monsanto has been suppressing it." Kherkher represented the plaintiffs along with Al Stewart of the Al Stewart Law Firm and Erica Slater of the Simon Law Firm.

The EPA issued a notice in 1979 banning the manufacturing PCBs and creating a plan to phase out PCB usage in the US. In a press release, the organization stated, "PCBs have caused birth defects and cancer in laboratory animals, and they are a suspected cause of cancer and adverse skin and liver effects in humans. EPA estimates that 150 million pounds of PCBs are dispersed throughout the environment, including air and water supplies; an additional 290 million pounds are located in landfills in this country."

Despite the phasing out of these compounds, traces of PCBs still remain in food products and water sources, including rivers and streams, in the US.

Internal Monsanto documents indicate that the company knew about the dangers of PCB exposure as many as 20 years before the EPA banned their use. An internal Monsanto document from 1955 stated, "We know Aroclors [PCBs] are toxic but the actual limit has not been precisely defined."

About Williams Kherkher 
Williams Kherkher is a nationally recognized trial law firm, representing clients across the country in mass torts, personal injury and commercial litigation. Williams Kherkher welcomes the opportunity to work with other law firms in joint ventures.

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