Manville Trust Sues Tobacco Companies; Lawsuit Relies on Unimpeachable Scientific Evidence of Direct Link Between Smoking and Many Asbestos Diseases
FAIRFAX, Va., Dec. 31 /PRNewswire/ -- The Manville Personal Injury Settlement Trust announced today that it had filed a lawsuit against seven tobacco companies. The 21-page complaint requests that the tobacco companies reimburse the Trust for all sums paid to Trust beneficiaries whose asbestos disease was caused in whole or in part by the smoking-related illness which the tobacco companies caused. The amount in question runs into the billions of dollars.
Robert A. Falise, Chairman and Managing Trustee of the Trust, stated that the lawsuit was filed to prevent the proposed tobacco settlement legislation from cutting off the rights of asbestos victims to sue tobacco companies. ``The Tobacco Settlement as proposed is unjust and unfair to our Trust beneficiaries, the beneficiaries of the other asbestos trusts, and claimants of all former asbestos manufacturers who are or were smokers,'' Mr. Falise noted.
``The tobacco companies should be required, through this lawsuit or through legislation, to pay their fair share of the injuries they have caused and will continue to cause to trust beneficiaries who are or were smokers,'' Falise added.
The complaint charges that the tobacco defendants conspired to withhold information from the public concerning the health dangers associated with smoking and that there is a clear, scientifically established link between smoking and the enhanced risk of lung disease in persons who are occupationally exposed to asbestos.
An asbestos worker who smoked is almost 100 times more likely to die of lung cancer, the complaint charges, as compared to a five times greater risk for the asbestos worker who did not smoke. The complaint states that smoking also has been found to increase the severity of other lung diseases from which asbestos workers suffer, including asbestosis.
Named as defendants were the American Tobacco Company, R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company, B.A.T. Industries, PLC, Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation, Philip Morris Incorporated, Liggett Group, Inc., and Lorillard Tobacco Company.
The lawsuit charges the tobacco defendants with concealment and misrepresentation concerning the health effects of smoking. It also charges that the proposed tobacco settlement would have the effect of eliminating claims by the Trust against the tobacco companies -- demonstrating that the tobacco defendants are trying to avoid their responsibilities to compensate asbestos victims whose injuries and damages were caused by the defendants' cigarettes.
The Manville Trust was established in 1986 following the bankruptcy of the Johns Manville Corporation. Experts testifying during the Manville bankruptcy hearings predicted the Trust would receive between 83,000 and 100,000 claims during its entire life. However, during the past nine years the Trust has received over 350,000 claims and expects to receive an additional 350,000 claims.
I think I will certify a class action on behalf of all those who smoke after sex. There is proof that the relaxed state of the mond and body makes it more likely to smoke down to he filter rather than throw it way 2 puffs before. Now that I think of it, all those who particiapte in sports and smoke can join also....and..and.. oh, all those who live in the city can join to, since the volumetric increase of car fumes in the air combined with cigs may increase your health risk.............oh... and who can forget..........
i can remember when i was a manvile pfd holder. i thought my dividend, etc was guaranteed. dum?? hell i don't even know how to spell dumb.
here's my question. if the trust managed to get all that money out of manville (because they said it was manville's fault) and now they're trying to get money out of mo/rn, etc., then don't you think maybe they ought to give something back to manville (then back to me, so i won't be so dum) ???
i wonder if that might not be the thinking of tobacco's defense team. naah, that's too dum.