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Sun. Apr 21st, 2024

A jury in the United States has mandated chemical company Monsanto, now under the ownership of German pharmaceutical firm Bayer, to remunerate $857 million to seven individuals at a Washington state school.

These individuals claimed adverse health effects resulting from chemicals emanating from light fixtures, specifically polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). This verdict compounds Monsanto’s existing legal challenges, particularly in the aftermath of court losses related to its glyphosate-based weedkiller, Roundup.

The jury’s decision encompasses a compensation sum of $73 million and an additional $784 million in punitive damages allocated to the plaintiffs. Attorney Felix Luna asserted that Monsanto engaged in prolonged subterfuge to conceal the detrimental impacts of PCBs, emphasizing their enduring nature and neurotoxic properties. Monsanto, planning to contest the ruling, contends that objective evidence refutes claims of unsafe PCB exposure levels.

PCBs, originally employed as coolants and lubricants, carry health risks, prompting concerns about the safety of outdated fixtures at the school. This ruling amplifies Monsanto’s legal entanglements within the broader context of controversies surrounding its product portfolio.

The company’s intention to appeal underscores its commitment to challenging the verdict. This development further underscores the intricate legal landscape Monsanto faces, compounded by ongoing disputes related to Roundup and the broader implications of its acquisition by Bayer.

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