June 12 (UPI) — A California jury ordered Johnson & Johnson and Colgate-Palmolive Co. to pay nearly $ 10 million to a woman who blamed her cancer diagnosis on their products.
Patricia Schmitz, who said she was diagnosed with mesothelioma after using J&J’s Baby Powder or Colgate’s Cashmere Bouquet after showering for most of her life, was awarded $ 4.8 million in damages from each company after a jury determined the company’s talc-based products were responsible for her cancer.
The jurors found that each company was 40 percent responsible for Schimtz’s illness while Avon Products — which was not listed as a defendant — was responsible for about $ 2.4 million in damages after Schmitz testified about purchasing Avon products.
J&J said it will appeal the ruling and has denied its Baby Powder contains asbestos or causes cancer, citing independent clinical evidence.
“There were serious procedural and evidentiary errors in the proceeding that required us to move for mistrial on multiple occasions and we believe provide strong grounds for appeal,” a company representative told CNBC.
A Colgate representative also said the trial “suffered from numerous significant legal and evidentiary errors that we believe unfairly prejudiced the defense.”
J&J faces more than 14,000 lawsuits stating its powders cause ovarian cancer and mesothelioma.