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‘Powerful’ youth volleyball coach faces sexual assault class action

An Aurora, Illinois man dubbed “the most powerful coach in youth volleyball,” by sports network ESPN is now the center of a potential multimillion-dollar class action lawsuit alleging the coach raped and sexually abused underaged players, the Cook County Record reported. The club volleyball program he was affiliated with is also named in the lawsuit for not protecting athletes from the coach. U.S. District Judge Matthew F. Kennelly, green-lighted the request from plaintiff Laura Mullen to certify the class against coach Rick Butler, the Great Lakes Volleyball Center, and Butler’s Sports Performance Volleyball Club. The class could grow into the ... Read More

Workers sue J&J for overvaluing stocks amid asbestos scandal

Johnson & Johnson employees who trusted the company with their retirement savings by investing in the company’s stock are suing the consumer health care giant. They accuse the company of overvaluing its stocks while hiding the fact that its talcum powder products contained cancer causing asbestos, according to a proposed class action complaint filed in New Jersey federal court, Law360 reported. Lead plaintiff Michael Perrone claims that J&J and some of its senior executives violated the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) by failing to act in the best interest of their retirement plans because they knew for decades that ... Read More

Four men accuse Bohemian Rhapsody director of sexual assault when they were teens

Four men have accused Bohemian Rhapsody director Bryan Singer of sexually assaulting them in California between 1997 and 1999, when they were underage, The Atlantic reported. Writers Alex French and Maximillian Potter spent 12 months investigating the claims of the four men, speaking to more than 50 sources about allegations of sexual assault and abuse of underage boys at lavish parties Singer threw. Singer’s attorney denies his client ever had sex with or any interest in underage men. According to the report, one of the boys, Victor Valdovinos, claims when he was 13 and working as an extra on Singer’s ... Read More

Bayer asks judge to split second Roundup bellwether into two phases

A California judge is considering splitting into two parts the second bellwether trial in a lawsuit blaming an ingredient in the weed killer Roundup for causing cancer, in the same fashion a different judge did for the first bellwether. The first phase would focus on whether the ingredient glyphosate caused the plaintiff’s cancer and, if so, the second phase proceeds to determine Bayer/Monsanto’s liability. Lawyers for Bayer AG’s unit Monsanto asked California Superior Court Judge Winifred Smith to split the trial in the case of Alva and Alberta Pilliod, a husband and wife who allege each of them developed non-Hodgkin ... Read More

Parents of Boy Scout Killed at Camp Push for Better Safety

The family of a Boy Scout who was killed during a camping expedition in Georgia has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the scouting organization in an effort to boost safety standards. Fourteen-year-old Elijah Knight of Cypress, Texas, died when a tree fell on his tent during a severe thunderstorm June 28 at the Bert Adams Scout Camp in Covington, Georgia. His parents, Stephen and Courtney Knight, say the Boy Scouts of America failed to take proper measures to ensure the scouts’ safety. According to the lawsuit, which they filed Jan. 8 in a state court in Cobb County, Georgia, ... Read More

Ethicon hit with $41 million verdict over defective transvaginal mesh claims

A woman who endured nine surgeries and nearly a dozen chemical cauterizations after her transvaginal mesh device eroded inside her body was awarded $41 million by a Philadelphia jury. Jurors found Johnson & Johnson subsidiary Ethicon Inc., had negligently designed the mesh implant and never warned that the device could erode though the body’s soft tissue in the pelvis and cause permanent scarring, debilitating pain, and other problems, Law360 reported. Transvaginal mesh was designed to treat conditions such as pelvic organ prolapse (POP) or stress urinary incontinence. The mesh was implanted through the vagina. It was billed as a minimally ... Read More

Yuba County Lawsuit Blames PG&E for Cascade Fire Destruction

Yuba County, California, has joined the growing ranks of plaintiffs suing Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) over devastating losses it suffered in the Cascade Fire in October 2017. The lawsuit, filed in Yuba County Superior Court, faults the state’s largest utility company for fires and explosions stretching back to 1981. According to the Appeal-Democrat, the county asserts the disasters stem from “well-documented systemic failures, including lack of safety regulations, inspection, maintenance, and risk management practices …” These failures “caused and/or contributed to causing one of the most destructive and deadly wildfires California has ever seen (collectively, the ‘North Bay Fires’),” the ... Read More

Whistleblower Files Retaliation Complaint Against Texas Mental Health Hospital

A whistleblower who lost her job at an Austin, Texas area mental health hospital allegedly for reporting patient mistreatment to state regulators has filed a retaliation complaint, accusing her former employer of violating Texas whistleblower laws. Plaintiff Nicola Seahorn was hired as the clinical services director at Georgetown Behavioral Health Institute in April 2018. She was on the job just a few months when she became concerned about the mistreatment of patients by hospital staff. On June 26, the chief nurse notified Ms. Seahorn that a mental health tech had punched a patient in the face, an altercation that was ... Read More

J&J argues talc litigation should be tried one plaintiff at a time

It’s been six months since Johnson & Johnson was hit with a staggering $4.69 billion verdict in a case brought by 22 women who alleged the company’s talcum powder products contained cancer-causing asbestos that contributed to their ovarian cancer diagnosis, but the sting has yet to fade. Earlier this month, the consumer health care giant urged the Missouri Supreme Court to force St. Louis Circuit Court Judge Rex Burlison to unbundle a similar trial involving 13 women with ovarian cancer, saying it was unfair not to try the cases one plaintiff at a time. The state’s high court agreed to ... Read More

Perdue’s Sackler family blamed addicts for opioid epidemic

In 1996, Purdue Pharma held a launch party to introduce its new, potent opioid called OxyContin. Then-senior vice president Richard Sackler made a prediction that the party “will be followed by a blizzard of prescriptions that will bury the competition.” Not only was Sackler right, OxyContin became “one of the deadliest drugs of all time,” according to Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey in an amended lawsuit filed against the company. Over the next 20 years since the drug’s launch, Richard Sackler became CEO of Purdue. With family members Beverly, David, Ilene, Lefcourt, Jonathan, Kathe, Mortimer, and Theresa sitting on the ... Read More