A St. Louis jury has awarded nearly $USD 4.7 billion ($6.35 billion Australian) in damages to 22 women and their families after they claimed asbestos in Johnson & Johnson talcum powder caused their ovarian cancer.

Jurors on Thursday awarded the women $4.14 billion in punitive damages and $550 million in compensatory damages after a six-week trial in St. Louis Circuit Court reports 9 news.

Plaintiffs’ lawyer Mark Lanier told the jurors during closing arguments Wednesday that Johnson & Johnson knew its products contained asbestos and didn’t warn consumers.

Johnson & Johnson spokeswoman Carol Goodrich said in a statement that the company believes its products are safe and will pursue “all available appellate remedies.”


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The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports this case differed from five previous lawsuits against the company because it focused on claims that asbestos allegedly found in the baby powder caused the cancer.

Plaintiffs’ lawyer Mark Lanier told the jurors during closing arguments Wednesday that they were the first to see documents showing that Johnson & Johnson knew its products contained asbestos and didn’t warn consumers.

Johnson & Johnson said in a statement it was disappointed in the verdict but would not comment further until the punitive damages are announced.

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  • Johnson & Johnson may not have known the danger of asbestos when they put it in their talcum powder. The same applies to the asbestos mines including those in WA and the asbestos being used in buildings. I wonder how many other talcum powders – not promoted solely for babies may have had asbestos in them. A few years ago I noticed that one talcum powder was labelled aluminium free. Obviously that has been a problem at some point too.

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  • I’m stunned that Johnson & Johnson knew its products contained asbestos and didn’t warn consumers !! I’ve always loved the smell of their products. Flip, I even used the body lotion for myself some years !

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  • How can they sell it knowing that it contains a asbestos?

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  • It’s so terrible, no amount of money would make up for the damage asbestos does.

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  • I always used this product, so did my Mum and my Nanna. Looks like we were lucky. It’s a wonder it hasn’t been taken off the shelves if it contains asbestos or have they since changed the ingredients?

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  • Oh my word! I knew it wasn’t good to use this on babies due to them being able to inhale it, but had no idea it had ASBESTOS in it- how has this been allowed to go on in this day and age?

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  • Why would they continue to sell a product known to cause cancer. What money grabbing executives made that decision.

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  • My goodness, this is just crazy.

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  • Wow, I had no idea it was to this extent. I imagine then this may be the tip of the iceberg for their accountability and they must pay damages to all those who have suffered. This is people’s lives.

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  • God, if that’s true then this is only the start.

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  • I’m confused by this because if the products being sold in Australia were known to be unsafe they would have to be pulled from the shelves so is this some of their products were contaminated with asbestos and they found out but kept quiet or is it asbestos is put in the products?

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  • So many cases against J&J lately. And I expect more to come after these big pay-outs.


    • The payout is massive and an interesting issue to watch.

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  • This is quite horrifying and worth looking into further!

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  • How are they still allowed to sell this after so many won lawsuits

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  • And people still trust this company and buy their products!!

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