Vasko Win Makes Seven-in-a-Row For Tobacco

Posted by msch on Nov 5, 2010 10:53:00 AM

Vasko v Reynolds Jury Verdict FormThe tobacco companies won their seventh consecutive Engle trial yesterday when the jury in Vasko v. R.J. Reynolds found in favor of the defense.  Immediately prior to this, the tobacco companies also won Budnick, Warrick, Willis, Frazier, Campbell, and Rohr (plus a hung jury in Koballa, which is arguably an eighth defense win).

Rubio Ratzan's Stuart Ratzan convinced the jury to answer yes to Question 1: "Was John Vasko addicted to cigarettes containing nicotine, and if so, was such addiction a legal cause of his Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)?"

But Jones Day's Steve Geise convinced the jury to answer yes to Question 2, RJR's statute of limitations affirmative defense: "Did John Vasko know, or should have known, on or before May 5, 1990, in the exercise of reasonable care, that he had COPD and that there was a reasonable possibility that his COPD was caused by cigarette smoking?"

CVN webcast Vasko v. Reynolds live.

Two additional Engle trials are underway now: Espinosa v. Philip Morris, in Miami, Florida, and Webb v. R.J. Reynolds, in Bronson, Florida.

Topics: Toxic Torts, Products Liability, Vasko v. Reynolds, Engle Progeny, Tobacco Litigation