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attorneys 352 articles

Peanut exec faces life sentence in “unprecedented” food poisoning case

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U.S. government prosecutors have recommended a life sentence to a former peanut company owner convicted of knowingly selling and distributing a variety of peanut products contaminated with salmonella. Lawyers for both prosecution and defense say the recommended sentence of life in prison for Stewart Parnell, the 61-year-old head of Peanut Corporation of America, is “unprecedented” for a food poisoning case. Court documents show the U.S. Probation Office determined that Mr. Parnell’s crimes fell “in a life sentence Guidelines range” using sentencing calculations and guidelines. These calculations and determinations will be given to the federal judge to assist in sentencing Sept. ... Read More

Alleging ignition-switch cover-up, plaintiffs seek GM’s legal communications

GM recall

Plaintiffs seeking documented communications between General Motors and its lawyers urged a New York federal judge Thursday to order GM to release the documents, arguing the automaker and its lawyers conspired to commit fraud to conceal a deadly ignition switch defect and therefore should not be allowed to hide their misconduct behind attorney-client privilege. Plaintiffs’ lawyers singled out three cases demonstrating how GM and its attorneys allegedly lied and buried evidence that it knew the ignition switches in millions of its cars were unsafe – actions that constitute a crime or fraud as defined by the crime-fraud exception to the ... Read More

Chinese Drywall Class Action plaintiffs await ruling on damages

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Nearly 3,000 homeowners who claim their homes and personal property have been ruined by cheaply made Chinese drywall await a federal judge’s decision after a trial to determine damages in a class-action lawsuit concluded Tuesday. U.S. District Judge Edon Fallon, who certified the class, heard testimony from expert witnesses in New Orleans and will decide damages without the participation of a jury. The judge plans to make a decision toward the end of the month, after meeting with attorneys from both sides. The class action includes homeowners from Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Texas, and Virginia who contend the defective drywall ... Read More

Xarelto lawsuits mount in recent months

xarelto

Lawsuits involving the bleeding side effects with the blood thinner Xarelto have seen a steady increase in recent months according to an analysis of statistics from the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation through mid-June. The biggest increases in new filings were seen in products liability litigation before U.S. District Judge Eldon Fallon in the Eastern District of Louisiana. The lawsuits target Xarelto makers Bayer and Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Janssen Pharmaceuticals. The lawsuits allege the drug makers did not adequately warn of major bleeding events including gastrointestinal bleeds and brain hemorrhages associated with use of the drug. Xarelto is ... Read More

Wrongful-death lawsuit filed against Philadelphia amphibious boat tour company

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The family of a woman who was hit and killed by an amphibious tour boat on a downtown Philadelphia street in May has filed a wrongful-death lawsuit against the tour company and the City of Philadelphia, asserting the vehicles should not be allowed on city streets. Elizabeth Karnicki, 69, of Beaumont, Texas, was touring Philadelphia on foot with her husband May 8 when the tour boat on wheels hit her as she was crossing a street. The Ride The Ducks tour drives visitors around Philadelphia’s historic neighborhoods and attractions before descending a ramp into the Delaware River for views of ... Read More

Train conductor gets reinstatement, back pay after whistleblower retaliation probe

railroad tracks

Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) railroad must reinstate a train conductor allegedly fired in retaliation for reporting a work injury and pay him $536,000 in compensatory damages, back pay, and attorneys’ fees, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) said. According to the agency, BNSF, the second-largest freight railroad in North America, took disciplinary action against the conductor after he reported a knee injury that he received on board a train traveling from Vancouver, Canada, to Pasco, Wash., in 2010. The company’s actions prompted the conductor to file a Federal Railroad Safety Act anti-discrimination complaint with OSHA in February 2011. ... Read More

On-call employment scheduling ended by Victoria’s Secret

money

Earlier this month, on-call employment came into question when one Victoria’s Secret employee filed a lawsuit stating that mandatory on-call shifts resulted in wage theft in the retail industry. According to BuzzFeed News, Victoria’s Secret has now put an end to its on-call scheduling practices. On-call employment is a common practice still utilized by many employers, primarily in the retail industry, as a means of ensuring they have backup employees available if needed. However, since employees are required to call in at least two hours before their scheduled shift, and be available between those hours, on-call workers are unable to accurately schedule ... Read More

Attorneys request consolidation of power morcellator lawsuits

morcellator

Attorneys for six women suing Johnson & Johnson over injuries they claim to have suffered after undergoing gynecological procedures with the company’s power morcellator device have filed a request with the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation to consolidate with at least 22 similar lawsuits pending in 16 different federal district courts. The motion seeks to transfer the cases to U.S. District Judge Kathryn Vratil in Kansas. The request comes just weeks after the Wall Street Journal reported that Johnson & Johnson was being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) about how much the company knew about cancer ... Read More

Attorneys request moving hundreds of transvaginal mesh lawsuits to PA

transvaginal mesh

Plaintiffs in more than 500 lawsuits spread across two separate multidistrict litigations alleging defectively designed transvaginal mesh made by Bard Inc. and Ethicon Inc. caused serious injuries have requested their cases be moved out of West Virginia and into Pennsylvania federal court so that their claims could be dealt with faster. More than 70,000 lawsuits in seven separate multidistrict litigations alleging injuries with transvaginal mesh from various manufacturers are pending in West Virginia. At least 23,000 of those are waged against Johnson & Johnson’s Ethicon, and another 10,000 have been filed against Bard. This week, U.S. District Judge Joseph Goodwin, ... Read More

Plaintiffs accuse GM, lawyers of ignition switch cover-up

GM recall

General Motors and its lawyers worked together to cover up the automaker’s deadly ignition switch defect and avoid a recall, multidistrict litigations (MDL) plaintiffs asserted in a motion to compel documents filed last week in a New York federal court. The plaintiffs argue that starting in 2010, Atlanta-based international corporate law firm King & Spalding warned GM repeatedly about the legal trouble that would befall GM if knowledge of its ignition switch defect became known. To remedy this, the law firm encouraged the new post-bankruptcy GM to quietly settle with plaintiffs harmed by the ignition switch defect in Chevrolet Cobalts, ... Read More