WASHINGTON – A jury in the United States ordered Johnson & Johnson on Thursday to pay $4.69 billion in damages to 22 women and their families who had claimed the company’s talcum power products caused them to develop ovarian cancer.
The compensation awarded by a jury in St. Louis, Missouri, is divided into $550 million in compensatory damages and another $4.14 billion in punitive damages.
This is the largest damages Johnson & Johnson has faced to date among about 9,000 similar cases.
The plaintiffs, six of whom have already died, alleged that asbestos found in the baby-product company’s talcum powder caused their ovarian cancer since the 1970s.
Johnson & Johnson, which has announced that it will appeal against the verdict, argues that its talc products do not contain asbestos or cause cancer.