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Arkansas 59 articles

Janssen ordered to pay $136 million for Risperdal illegal marketing


The South Carolina Supreme Court has ordered Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Janssen Pharmacetuicals to pay $136 million to the state for deceptively marketing its antipsychotic drug Risperdal. The decision upholds penalties against the company but reduces the damages, which were originally set at $327 million by a trial court in 2011. Justices said the penalty had to be reduced because of South Carolina’s three-year statute of limitations. Risperdal, known generically as risperidone, is used to treat adults and children with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and irritability with autism. The drug has also been prescribed off label to treat attention deficit hyperactivity ... Read More

Listeria illnesses, deaths linked to Happy Apples Company prepackaged caramel apples

Happy Apples caramel apples

Happy Apples Company of Washington, Mo., is recalling its prepackaged caramel apples after the products were found to be the source of a listeria monocytogenes outbreak that sickened 29 and killed five in 10 states. All 29 people who were sickened were hospitalized, and nine of the illnesses occurred in pregnant women. The recall comes about a week after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a warning to consumers not to eat prepackaged caramel apples as it investigated which commercially made brands were responsible for the outbreak. Though the apples are most popular around Halloween, the CDC ... Read More

“Fatigued driving” tops survey of reasons why someone shouldn’t have been driving

sleepy truck driver sign

A recent survey performed by CarInsurance.com asked 2,000 drivers which times he or she drove when they shouldn’t have. Answers ranged from being too sick to even being less drunk than their companion, but the most common answer, holding an enormous 68 percent of the vote, was driving while sleepy, also known as “fatigued driving.” Fatigued driving occurs when drivers have gone for an extended period of time without a substantial amount of rest and are thereby impaired from operating a vehicle in the safest manner. Some symptoms of a driver experiencing fatigue include slower information-processing and decision-making; longer reaction ... Read More

Tire blowout on log truck in Arkansas results in the death of two construction workers; 19 injured

Log truck overturned - WSFA photo

In Arkansas, a log truck lost control and spilled logs onto nearby construction workers, killing two and injuring 19. The accident, which occurred on U.S. Highway 65 in Clinton, is reported to have been caused by a tire blowout, state police said. According to the preliminary state police report, the big rig’s trailer, which was being driven by 39-year-old Jerry Hickman, had its left rear tire blow out, shifting its load of logs onto the roadway and onto a nearby work zone where construction workers were widening a bridge. Nearly 40 workers were on the bridge at the time of ... Read More

GSK to pay $105 million to settle claims it unlawfully promoted drugs


GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has reached a $105 million agreement with 44 states and the District of Columbia to settle lawsuits alleging the drug company marketed some of its drugs for unapproved uses. The settlement also requires GSK to pay a hefty penalty and submit to strong new rules designed to prevent future misrepresentations. GSK did not admit any wrongdoing or liability under the settlement. The arrangement is similar to one GSK reached with the federal government two years ago, in which the company agreed to pay $3 billion to settle criminal and civil claims involving illegal marketing of its asthma drug ... Read More

Johnson & Johnson, Janssen face more lawsuits from Risperdal side effects, marketing practices


Arkansas Attorney General Dustin McDaniel says he will ask the state Supreme Court to reconsider tossing out a $1.2 billion judgment against Johnson & Johnson over questionable marketing practices involving its antipsychotic drug Risperdal. McDaniel argues that the state misapplied the Medicaid fraud law and has requested an analysis comparing the 1993 law as it was passed to the way it was written into state code. The report, which he was granted a copy of, may be helpful in asking for a new hearing, he said. The lawsuit alleged Johnson & Johnson and its subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals did not adequately ... Read More

Mayflower residents say Exxon pipeline spill sickened them, devastated their town

exxon mobil logos

Nearly a year after Exxon’s Pegasus pipeline ruptured in the town of Mayflower, Arkansas, many residents continue to cope with displacement, chronic health problems, rejected claims and unanswered questions. “They have devastated Mayflower,” Genieve Long, one town resident, told msnbc. Ms. Long lives in an area just outside of the neighborhood that was flooded with thousands of barrels of toxic bitumen shale oil that Exxon was moving from Canada to a refinery in Texas. Twenty-two homes were evacuated in the March 2013 disaster, but most residents whose property wasn’t physically touched by the oil leak have found nowhere to turn. ... Read More

CVS agrees to pay $4.25 million to settle whistleblower’s fraud allegations

osha whistle

A lawsuit filed under the federal False Claims Act against CVS Caremark Corp. has resulted in a $4.25-million settlement to resolve a whistleblower’s allegations that the company knowingly defrauded federal and state Medicaid programs by failing to reimburse the taxpayer-funded programs for drug expenses that should have been paid by the private insurer. Under the terms of the agreement, the federal government will receive $2.31 million. Five states that joined the lawsuit – Arkansas, California, Delaware, Louisiana and Massachusetts – will share $1.94 million. Texas also joined the lawsuit but settled the allegations separately. CVS Caremark is one of the ... Read More

Three commercial truck drivers banned from road following crash investigation

trucks on highway

U.S. safety regulators have ordered three long-haul truck drivers from three different states to cease their interstate operations after investigators deemed them to be an imminent hazard to public safety, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced. The three drivers, from Michigan, Texas, and Illinois, were banned from the road following their involvement in crashes, two of which resulted in the deaths of other motorists and a third that left a police officer seriously injured. On Sept. 13, Michigan-licensed truck driver Tracy Ferrell was operating a tractor-trailer on U.S. Highway 23 in Pickaway County, Ohio, when he crashed into ... Read More

L’Oreal under attack after Garnier hair product exposes consumers to fire hazards due to flammability

hair product fire - WBRC news image

Garnier Fructis Sleek and Shine Anti Frizz Serum is now under attack after several incidents were reported concerning the flammability of the product, posing substantial burn risks to the consumer’s face, head and neck. L’Oreal, the hair product’s parent company, has certain customers complaining they were not properly warned that the main ingredients of the product, cyclopentasiloxane and dimethiconol, contain an ignition point of only 171 degrees Fahrenheit – a considerably lower degree point than hair flat irons on the market today. A class action lawsuit against L’Oreal was filed in Los Angeles in June of 2011, saying: “L’Oreal placed ... Read More