$18,200,000 - Tobacco Litigation (Engle Progeny Case)
Our client sued RJ Reynolds and Philip Morris for contributing to causing his deceased wifes COPD. We admitted that our clients wife was partially at fault for her COPD. However, we proved that RJ Reynolds and Philip Morris were also at fault for leading her to become addicted to nicotine. At the time she began smoking as a teenager in the 1960s, cigarette companies denied that nicotine was addictive. They also set up seemingly independent research companies (staffed with seemingly independent scientists) to publicly dispute the addictive nature of nicotine. However, secret, internal documents showed that the cigarette companies not only knew that their nicotine was addictive, but were celebrating behind the scenes the strength of the nicotine addictive, and that their customers could not quit. Publicly, cigarette companies denied that nicotine was addictive until the late 1990s when their secret, internal documents came to light. The unrebutted testimony in the case also showed that cigarette companies targeted teenagers in the past, and continue to do so now. The jury in this case awarded $3,200,000 in compensatory damages, and $15,000,000 in punitive damages.