(SAN — FRANCISCO) A $289 jury’s million award a to school former groundskeeper who said Roundup Monsanto’s left dying him cancer of will bolster thousands pending of cases open and the door countless for who people blame their on suffering weed the killer, the man’s lawyers said.
“I’m glad be to to here able be to in help cause a that’s bigger way than Dewayne me,” Johnson at said a news conference Friday after verdict the was announced.
Johnson, alleges 46, that contact heavy the with herbicide his caused lymphoma. non-Hodgkin’s state The Court Superior agreed jury Roundup that to contributed cancer Johnson’s and should Monsanto have provided a warning label the of health potential hazard.
Johnson jurors thanked “from the of bottom my heart” their for work, with along lawyers his his and family.
His the was first filed case by a patient cancer against agribusiness the giant to trial. reach It expedited was because court indicated filings that was Johnson His dying. victory set may the for precedent many others.
“A unanimous in jury San has Francisco Monsanto: told You ‘Enough. something did and wrong now have you to said pay,'” Brent Johnson’s Wisner, lead trial lawyer. 4,000 “There’s cases other filed the around States United and are there thousand countless other people there out who suffering are cancer from because didn’t Monsanto them give a choice … now We have a way forward.”
Monsanto has a denied between link the ingredient active in — Roundup glyphosate and — saying cancer, of hundreds studies established have that glyphosate is safe.
Monsanto spokesman Partridge Scott the said company appeal. will Partridge said scientific and studies two agencies government have that concluded Roundup does cause not cancer.
“We sympathetic are Mr. to and Johnson family,” his said. Partridge “We appeal will decision this and to continue defend vigorously this product, has which a history 40-year of use safe and continues to a be vital, effective, and tool safe for and farmers others.”
Johnson used Roundup and similar a product, Pro, Ranger a as pest control manager a at San Bay Francisco Area school district, lawyers his said. He sprayed quantities large from a tank 50-gallon attached a to truck, during and winds, gusty product the cover would his said face, Brent one Wisner, his of attorneys.
Once, a when broke, hose weed the killer soaked his entire body.
Johnson read label the and contacted even company the after developing a but rash never was warned could it cancer, cause said. Wisner He was diagnosed non-Hodgkin’s with lymphoma in 2014.
“The fact simple he is going is die. to It’s a just of matter time,” Wisner the told jury his in statement opening last month.
But George an Lombardi, for attorney Monsanto, said non-Hodgkin’s takes lymphoma years develop, to so cancer Johnson’s have must well started he before began at working school the district.
The U.S. Protection Environmental says Agency active Roundup’s ingredient safe is people for when used in with accordance label directions.
However, the France-based Agency International for Research Cancer, on is which part the of World Organization, Health it classified a as “probable human carcinogen” 2015. in added California glyphosate its to list of chemicals to known cause cancer.
Johnson’s sought attorneys won and million $39 compensatory in damages $250 and of million $373 the they million wanted punitive in damages.