Actos Lawsuit News: Jury Awards $9 Billion In Damages Against Makers of Diabetes Drug For Not Disclosing Cancer Risks

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One of the Largest Punitive Damages Awards Has Been Handed Down by a Lousianna Jury in an Actos Lawsuit that links the Diabetes Drug to Cancer

Actos-Lawsuit-Wright-and-Schulte-LLCWright & Schulte has recently learned that a federal jury in Louisiana rendered a combined $9 billion punitive damage verdict against Takeda Pharmaceuticals U.S.A. Inc. and Eli Lilly & Co., over their prescribed diabetic drug, Actos, which has purportedly been linked to cancer. The jury in this Actos lawsuit (case no. 11-md-02299) agreed with the plaintiffs that the drug makers did not disclose the cancer risk associated with taking the medication and told Takeda to pay $6 billion and Lilly to pay $3 billion. The lawsuit against Takeda and Lilly was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana, where over 2,700 Actos lawsuits have been consolidated and awaiting pretrial hearings (MDL 2299).

Takeda and Lilly were sued by a New York couple in 2011, the same year the husband was diagnosed with bladder cancer, after taking Actos since 2006, according to an April 8, 2014, The New York Times.

The attorneys at Wright & Schulte LLC are currently representing clients in pending Actos lawsuits filed under MDL 2299 in the Western District of Louisiana and are please with this jury award against the diabetes drug manufacturer. The firm is currently offering free case evaluations to people who believe they have been harmed by Actos or other harmful prescription drugs on the market today.

According to the New York Times, the jury discovered that Takeda found out in the early 2000s, that there was a connection between Actos and bladder cancer, but did not reveal this to doctors and patients. Court documents showed Actos made $16 billion in sales in the United States since 1999, when the drug first became available, according to the article.(In Re: Actos [Pioglitazone] Products Liability Litigation, MDL Docket No. 2299, No. 6:11-md-2299, Allen v. Takeda Pharmaceuticals North America Inc., et al., No. 12-64, E.D. La.)
[nytimes.com/2014/04/09/business/international/japanese-drug-maker-ordered-to-pay-6-billion-over-cancer-claims.html?_r=0, April 9, 2014]

The attorney for the plaintiff in this Actos lawsuit stated in an April 8, 2014, Bloomberg.com article that Takeda destroyed its development, marketing and sales documents of Actos, which prompted the judge to tell jurors that they could conclude that the records may have supported the plaintiff’s claims that the company failed to disclose the risks of taking the medication.
[bloomberg.com/news/2014-04-07/takeda-actos-jury-awards-6-billion-in-punitive-damages.html, April 8, 2014]

Actos Lawsuit Verdict Among Highest Jury Awards

According to Bloomberg, this Actos lawsuit verdict is the seventh-largest jury award in U.S. history based on an analysis done by Bloomberg. The article went on to say that the Takeda and Lilly multibillion verdict will more than likely be reduced or reversed based on a U.S. Supreme Court ruling which held that punitive damages, which punishes a defendant, should be in proportion to compensatory damages. Bloomberg.com made this claim based on data it collected showing the top 10 punitive damage verdicts in the U.S. were not awarded at the same amount determined by the juries.

The general counsel and senior vice president for Takeda’s U.S. subsidiary in Deerfield, Illinois, stated in a news release posted on the company’s website that Takeda “acted responsibly” with its diabetes drug Actos and may possibly file post-trial motions or an appeal.

Lilly’s senior vice president and general counsel stated in a news release posted on the company’s website that Lilly will “vigorously challenge this outcome through all available legal means.” The news release further disclosed that Lilly has an agreement with Takeda in which Lilly will be indemnified by Takeda for losses and expenses connected with litigation in the United States.
[takeda.com/news/2014/20140408_6295.html, April 8, 2014;
[investor.lilly.com/releasedetail.cfm?ReleaseID=838871, April 8, 2014]

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Actos, also known as pioglitazone, is a prescribed drug used to treat type 2 diabetes mellitus or diabetes. The FDA acknowledged in a public safety announcement on June 15, 2011, that users who took the medication for more than one year increased their risk of bladder cancer. In a medication guide, the FDA warns of serious side effects such as bladder cancer, low blood sugar (hypoglycemia), diabetic eye disease, broken bones, liver problems and new or worsening heartfailure.
[fda.gov/drugs/drugsafety/ucm259150.htm, June 15, 2011]
[fda.gov/downloads/drugs/drugsafety/ucm183833.pdf]

According to court documents there are currently over 2,700 Actos lawsuits pending in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Louisiana (MDL 2299). All of the claims alleged one or more serious side effect such as bladder cancer, liver problems and even heart failure.

The Louisiana jury in the original Actos trial awarded nearly $1.5 million in compensatory damages to the plaintiff who sued Takeda and Lilly, according to the Bloomberg.com report.
[bloomberg.com/news/2014-04-07/takeda-actos-jury-awards-6-billion-in-punitive-damages.html, April 8, 2014]

Wright & Schulte LLC, an experienced personal injury firm, is dedicated to the belief that America’s legal system should work for the people. Every day, the attorneys of Wright & Schulte LLC stand up for the rights of people who have been injured or wronged and fight tirelessly to ensure that even the world’s most powerful corporations take responsibility for their actions. If you’re looking for a law firm that will guarantee the aggressive and personal representation you deserve, please do not hesitate to contact Wright & Schulte LLC today. Free Actos lawsuit case evaluations and other harmful drug lawsuit evaluations are available through yourlegalhelp.com or by calling 1-800-399-0795.

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