Takeda and Eli Lilly Ordered to Pay a Combined $9 Billion in Punitive Damages over Bladder Cancer Allegations in Actos Litigation Parker Waichman LLP Comments

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Drug makers Takeda and Eli Lilly lost a bid to have the Actos trial thrown out. The Jury has been deemed to have appropriately considered the case and the settlement amounts have been deemed sound.

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“Bellwethers help all parties involved in a litigation understand the likely direction of the cases. This week’s ruling continues to support the plaintiffs’ allegations.” said Gary Falkowitz, Managing Attorney at Parker Waichman LLP

Parker Waichman LLP, a national law firm that has long been dedicated to protecting the rights of victims who have been injured by medications reports that Takeda Pharmaceuticals Co. indicated that a United States district court mandated the drug maker to pay $6 billion in punitive damages to settle the first federal lawsuit brought by a man alleging he developed bladder cancer after taking the diabetes drug, Actos, according to a September 5, 2014 report from The Japan Times.

The ruling also mandates Eli Lilly to pay $3 billion—the drug makers were Actos sales and marketing partners for a number of years. Both rulings follow a U.S. jury order that was issued this April by the district court in Louisiana, which also ordered Takeda to pay $1.27 million in compensatory damages; a total of $1.5 million in compensatory damages was ordered. The case is Allen v. Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America Inc., U.S. District Court, Western District of Louisiana (Lafayette) (Case No. 12-cv-00064) and is part of a multidistrict litigation (MDL No. 2299), in which the Honorable Rebecca F. Doherty is presiding.

Lawsuit allegations also include that Takeda and Eli Lilly hid cancer risks tied to Actos, according to an August 28, 2014 Bloomberg BusinessWeek report. U.S. District Judge Doherty ruled that jurors appropriately considered evidence that indicated Takeda and Eli Lilly officials were aware Actos was associated with bladder cancer, yet did not warn physicians and patients prior to their considering damage amounts. The verdict, which may be reduced on appeal, is the second largest verdict this year in the U.S. “The jury acted within its role and discretion to attach whatever weight and make whatever reasonable inference it deemed appropriate when assessing the defendants’ conduct,” Doherty wrote in her decision.

Parker Waichman has maintained a leadership role throughout the Actos litigation. In fact, Jerrold S. Parker, the firm’s founding partner, serves on the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee.

According to court documents, the plaintiffs in this first Actos bellwether trial, Terrence and Susan Allen, alleged that Mr. Allen took Actos for his Type 2 diabetes from 2004 through 2011; he developed bladder cancer in 2011. Mr. Allen alleges that Actos caused the cancer, that Takeda concealed risks associated with Actos from the public, and that he never would have taken Actos had he been informed of these risks. Approximately 2,700 lawsuits have been filed into the Actos MDL (MDL No. 2299).

Parker Waichman continues to remain actively involved in the Actos litigation and has filed lawsuits on behalf of numerous individuals who developed bladder cancer, allegedly due to their having taken Actos. The mounting complaints highlight an increasing level of evidence that reveals that use of Actos is related to a significantly increased risk of developing bladder cancer. For example, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned in 2011 that using Actos for more than one year could substantially raise this cancer risk; patients with bladder cancer were advised to not use the drug.

“The firm is happy that the Court continues to hold up the jury’s initial April findings,” said Gary Falkowitz, Managing Attorney at Parker Waichman LLP. “Bellwethers help all parties involved in a litigation understand the likely direction of the cases. This week’s ruling continues to support the plaintiffs’ allegations.”

Parker Waichman LLP continues to offer free legal consultations to victims who suffered bladder cancer after using Actos. If you or a loved one were diagnosed with bladder cancer after taking Actos, please contact the Firm by visiting yourlawyer.com. Free case evaluations are also available by calling 1-800-LAW-INFO (1-800-529-4636).

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