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Judge Upholds Roundup Chemical Verdict - Awards Plaintiff Over $78 Million


A Northern California judge upheld the jury verdict in favor of plaintiff DeWayne Johnson, a groundskeeper whose cancer was caused by Monsanto’s weed killer Roundup and denied Monsanto’s request for a new trial.

San Francisco Superior Court Judge Suzanne Bolanos affirmed the $39,253,209.35 compensatory damages award to Johnson, who contracted Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL) from the Monsanto product. Judge Bolanos also modified the punitive damages award to the maximum amount allowed under California law to $39,253,209.35 for a total award of more than $78 million.

Punitive damages are designed to punish wrongdoers like Monstanto. Johnson has until December 7 to either accept the verdict or demand a new trial. According to Johnson’s lawyers, they are currently reviewing Judge Bolanos’ decision and will decide on their next step after they are finished considering their options.

After the tentative ruling on October 11 where Judge Bolanos stated that she was considering completely wiping out the entire punitive damages award, some of the jurors wrote to her personally because they were so upset by that prospect according to the San Francisco Chronicle. One juror, Robert Howard said that seeing the verdict overturned would shake his confidence in the justice system. Another juror, Gary Kitahata wrote,

"I urge you to respect and honor our verdict and the six weeks of our lives that we dedicated to this trial."

Johnson’s case was one of hundreds of pending cases against Monsanto, but was the first one to go to trial. The Domina Law Group currently represents farmers who contracted NHL after being exposed to Roundup. Learn more about the devastating effects this product can have on humans here. If you think you may have contracted NHL due to exposure to Roundup, we encourage you to fill out this form so our attorneys can help you asses your potential financial recovery (PDF).

"Monsanto championed falsified data and has attacked legitimate studies that revealed Roundup’s dangers," the lawsuit states. "Monsanto led a campaign of misinformation to convince government agencies, farmers and the general population that Roundup is safe. Its continuing denial extends to the date of this Complaint."

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