A U.S. judge overseeing the federal litigation against Bayer AG’s Monsanto unit over glyphosate-based weed-killers allegedly causing cancer on [November 20] selected the first case to be tried in federal court in February 2019.
U.S. District Judge Vince Chaabria in San Francisco in an order said the case of California resident Edwin Hardeman will be the first out of more than 620 cases pending in the federal litigation to go to a jury.
Hardeman’s case will mark the second trial in the U.S. litigation over glyphosate, after a California state court jury in August awarded $289 million to a school groundskeeper, finding Monsanto liable for the man’s cancer.
Hardeman’s case was picked as a so-called bellwether, or test trial, frequently used in U.S. product liability mass litigation to help both sides gauge the range of damages and define settlement options.
Hardeman began using the Roundup brand herbicide with glyphosate in the 1980s to control poison oak and weeds on his property and sprayed “large volumes” of the chemical for many years on a regular basis, according to court documents. He was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a cancer of the lymph system, in February 2015 and filed his lawsuit a year later.
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