As reported last month by U.S. Right To Know (USRTK), dozens of law firms across the U.S. have formed a coalition to counter Bayer’s proposed $2 billion settlement for future Roundup lawsuits. Despite Bayer’s best efforts to make Roundup litigation go away, including an $11 billion settlement for the bulk of 125,000 claims, new Roundup cases are still being filed.
USRTK last week shined the spotlight on some of the lawyers and plaintiffs who are committed to taking the former Monsanto Corporation (now owned by Bayer) to trial over allegations that Roundup weed killer causes non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Ken Moll is a Chicago-based personal injury attorney. Moll has dozens of Roundup lawsuits pending. His firm has refused settlement offers from Bayer. The first of the new Roundup cases that Moll’s firm has filed since Bayer’s settlements were announced will start in July.
Moll’s legal strategy, per USRTK, will be very similar to that used in the only three Roundup cases that have gone to trial, all of which resulted in plaintiff victories and multi-million-dollar damage awards. The same expert witnesses in the three trials have been lined up by Moll. In addition, the same internal Monsanto documents that revealed corporate misconduct will be relied upon.
The main reason Moll and other attorneys for Roundup plaintiffs have rejected Bayer’s settlement is that they deem the compensation inadequate. In general, plaintiffs who joined the settlement class will receive no more than $50,000, which is less than one year of medical costs associated with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Roundup Plaintiffs Who Have Refused The Bayer Settlement
On July 19, the Roundup trial of plaintiff Donnetta Stephens, 70, of Yucaipa, California is set to begin. Stephens was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma four years ago. Because she has undergone numerous rounds of chemotherapy and is in significant near-constant pain, Stephens’ trial has been expedited. Stephens’ cognition and memory is also purportedly in decline.
The attorney representing Stephens as well as other Roundup plaintiffs is the Texas-based Andrew Kirkendall. Kirkendall, whose firm has Roundup suits moving forward to trial in California, Oregon, Missouri, Arkansas and Massachusetts, told USRTK, “The litigation is not over. It is going to be a continued headache for Bayer and Monsanto.”
US Right To Know reports that many other elderly Roundup plaintiffs have sought expedited trials; some have been granted preference trial dates. In addition, attorneys representing a child living with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL), allegedly caused by Roundup exposure, are seeking a trial date.
Another plaintiff whose attorneys are seeking an expedited trial is 76-year old Joseph Mignone. Mignone was diagnosed with NHL two years ago. Represented by the San Diego-based Singleton Law Firm, which according to USRTK has roughly 400 Roundup cases pending (mostly in Missouri and an additional 70 in California), Mignone has recently undergone radiation therapy to treat a debilitating neck tumor; he finished chemotherapy treatment last year.
A retired FBI agent and college professor, John Scahfer used Roundup without wearing protective clothing such as gloves for 30 years and was diagnosed with NHL in 2018.
A resident of San Antonio, TX, Randall Seidl, 63, applied Roundup for nearly a quarter-century. He was diagnosed with NHL in 2014.
Robert Karman passed away at age 77 from NHL-related complications in 2015. Karman allegedly used Roundup for 40 years, first spraying the herbicide in 1980. Using a hand-held sprayer, Karman applied Roundup once a week roughly 40 times throughout the year. A doctor discovered a lump on his groin the same year he passed away.
The USRTK article, written by veteran investigative journalist Carey Gillam, author of the recently released book about the first plaintiff to successfully sue Monsanto over Roundup—Dewayne Lee Johnson—concludes with a quote by Gerald Singleton of the aforementioned Singleton Law Firm.
Singleton suggested that in order for Bayer to put an end to Roundup litigation, there needs to be a clear cancer warning label on the herbicide.
“That is the only way this thing is going to be over and done,” he told USRTK, adding, “Until then, he said, “we’re not going to stop taking cases.”