US judge slashes Johnson & Johnson damages in Risperdal case

pharmafile | January 20, 2020 | News story | Sales and Marketing Big Pharma, Johnson & Johnson, Johnson & Johnson talc powder 

A judge in Philadelphia has reduced the amount of damages Johnson & Johnson was ordered to pay by a jury in October, from $8 million to $6.8 million.

It relates to the company allegedly downplaying risks that the antipsychotic Risperdal (risperidone) could lead to gynecomastia. In a statement, Johnson & Johnson said that the ruling was appropriate in reducing “the excessive punitive damages award.” The company are still seeking to get the verdict completely overturned.

Back in October, a lawyer representing the plantiffs, Thomas Kline, said on the original verdict that: “This jury resoundingly told Johnson & Johnson that its actions were deliberate and malicious.”

Johnson & Johnson’s original comment on the verdict stated: “This award is grossly disproportionate with the initial compensatory award in this case and is a clear violation of due process.”

Risperdal is used for the treatment of adults with schizophrenia and children who suffer from irritability associated with autism. It made $737 million in sales last year.

Johnson & Johnson has previously been in legal trouble over Risperdal. In 2013, they agreed to pay more than $2.2 billion to settle investigations by the US Department of Justice into marketing practices for Risperdal and two other drugs, including promotion for uses not approved by the FDA and the payment of kickbacks to physicians.

Conor Kavanagh

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