A court in the United States on Monday ordered pharmaceuticals and consumer goods company Johnson & Johnson to pay a record $417 million (around Rs 2,672 crore) to a woman who alleged that the talc used in the company’s baby powder causes ovarian cancer, reported The Washington Post. In her lawsuit, 63-year-old Eva Echeverria claimed that she used the talcum powder from the 1950s till 2016, and developed ovarian cancer in 2007.
The California resident alleged that Johnson & Johnson has failed to warn consumers about the risks involved in using their talcum powder. The court awarded the woman $68 million (around Rs 435 crore) as compensatory damages, and $340 million (around Rs 2,178 crore) as punitive damages.
Echeverria’s attorney said she was dying of ovarian cancer, and hoped that the court verdict would lead Johnson & Johnson to put more warnings on its products. “Echeverria is dying from this ovarian cancer, and she said to me that all she wanted to do was to help the other women throughout the country, who have ovarian cancer and have used Johnson & Johnson for 20 or 30 years.” said attorney Robinson.
After the verdict, Johnson & Johnson said they will challenge it. “We will appeal today’s verdict because we are guided by the science which supports the safety of Johnson’s baby powder,” said the company, according to The Guardian.
However, there are many similar trials going on against the company’s talcum power in various US courts. Johnson and Johnson lost four of these trials in a Missouri court, and was ordered to pay hundreds of millions of dollars in payouts.