A federal judge overseeing lawsuits alleging Bayer AG’s glyphosate-based Roundup weed killer causes cancer on [January 28] tentatively allowed pieces of controversial evidence that the company had hoped to exclude from upcoming trials.
The company denies allegations that glyphosate causes cancer and says decades of independent studies have shown the chemical to be safe for human use.
Chhabria….said plaintiffs could introduce some evidence of Monsanto’s alleged attempts to ghostwrite studies and influence the findings of scientists and regulators during the first phase of upcoming trials. He said documents which showed the company taking a position on the science or a study introduced during the first phase were “super relevant.”
The company had hoped the judge would take a harder line on such evidence following a Jan. 3 order by Chhabria restricting evidence of corporate misconduct….
Monsanto had argued much of this evidence was a “sideshow” that would only distract jurors from the scientific evidence. Plaintiffs’ lawyers contended some evidence of corporate misconduct was inextricably linked to their scientific claims.
The judge appeared to agree with them….and questioned whether it would be fair for the jury to not hear about the company’s alleged attempts to influence scientists.
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