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Jury rules for cancer victims in landmark NYC asbestos case.

Congratulations to my friend and colleague Dan Kraft who tried this case. While the verdict amount is not likely to stand up it sends a powerful message to those defendants who refuse to negotiate cases in good faith.

The New York Post (7/25, Marsh, 498K) reports that five cancer victims “won a whopping $190 million verdict in an asbestos case against two boiler companies,” but “only two of the five plaintiffs lived to see their victory,” as “three other tradesmen died from mesothelioma, an aggressive cancer caused by asbestos exposure.” The Manhattan Supreme Court jury came to a verdict on Tuesday after an 11-week trial, “having found the national companies – Burnham and Cleaver-Brooks – acted with reckless disregard for human life.” The victims were steamfitters, plumbers and construction workers, “but were not warned of the dangers related to the exposure to the deadly material. ‘These tragedies shouldn’t have happened,’ said their attorney, Daniel Kraft Jr. ‘I hope this verdict sends a message that corporations’ recklessness has a very real impact on people’s lives.’”

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