Takeda Pharmaceuticals was hit by sanctions for its defense counsel’s “very disrespectful” conduct during the trial of two women who claim the drug company’s type 2 diabetes medication Actos caused them to develop bladder cancer.
The trial of Delores Cipriano and Bertha Triana began in February, however the court noted that “defense counsel has repeatedly engaged in disruptive and disrespectful behavior toward the court, which is well-documented in the record. As a result, the court’s decision to impose sanctions is based on the aforementioned cumulative conduct of counsel in disobeying court orders and disrupting court procedings.”
Plaintiffs reported they had to make frequent objections and, while proper and necessary, may have caused jurors to believe plaintiffs were concealing evidence or simply trying to waste jurors’ time.
The sanction order comes on the heels of a Federal District Court sanction against Takeda for destruction of documents from 46 employees and sales representatives. That action is believed to have fueled a $9 billion judgment against Takeda Pharmaceuticals in one of thousands of Actos bladder cancer lawsuits.
In 2011, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned that Actos had been liked to an increased risk of bladder cancer. Takeda is accused of hiding and withholding information about cancer risks associated with Actos while vigorously marketing it to patients and doctors.
Source: Kansas City Legal Examiner