Court strongly mitigates glyphosate judgment against Bayer


Roundup, a weed killer from Monsanto containing glyphosate, has caused a lot of trouble for the Bayer Group.
Picture: dpa

Initially, the Leverkusen-based company was supposed to pay $ 289 million to a victim in the allegedly carcinogenic weed killer trial, then the sentence was reduced to $ 78 million – now $ 20.5 million is left.

IIn the appeal proceedings for the verdict in the first trial of allegedly carcinogenic weed killers with the active ingredient glyphosate, the punishment for the Bayer Group in America has been drastically reduced. The competent court in San Francisco lowered the damages and punitive damages that the company has to pay to cancer victim Dewayne Johnson on Monday from originally $ 289 million to $ 20.5 million (€ 17.9 million). However, the guilty verdict was not reversed as requested by Bayer.

Bayer welcomed the decision of the Court of Appeal in a statement as “a step in the right direction”. However, it was still considered that the judgment was not in line with the evidence presented at the trial and the applicable law. The company will review its legal remedies and is considering appealing again and bringing the case to the Supreme Court of California. Bayer continues to stand by that the weed killer is a safe product.

The plaintiff Johnson, who was diagnosed with lymph gland cancer in 2014, had blamed the weed killer Roundup of the American seed manufacturer Monsanto, which was taken over from Bayer in 2018, for his deadly suffering and accused the company of not disclosing the dangers. A jury of judges therefore sentenced Bayer in August 2018 to compensation in the hundreds of millions. The amount was then quickly reduced to $ 78 million, but Bayer still appealed.

The group has challenged all of the three previous American glyphosate judgments. Now the first decision has been made by a higher authority, but it is no longer of great importance. Because the company recently agreed with most of the many plaintiffs in the United States on a comprehensive comparison. The multi-billion dollar compromise is expected to remove most of the legal problems that the Leverkusen-based company faced with the $ 63 billion Monsanto takeover in one fell swoop.

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