By Christina Morales, Editor-in-Chief
Periscope News Group
June 18, 2018
Monsanto, makers of the controversial weedkiller Roundup, is once again centerstage as they struggle to prove the safety of their product in a bellwether-like trial being held in California Superior Court, San Francisco.
This case centers around Lee Johnson, a 46-year old groundskeeper who worked for the school district of Benicia (located in the San Francisco Bay Area). His job required him to mix hundreds of gallons of Roundup and by July 2014, just two years after starting the job, Johnson was diagnosed with a type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma is a cancer that has been linked to the use of glyphosate, the main ingredient found in Roundup. Even after completing chemotherapy and other treatments, Johnson recently received the painful news from his oncologist that he has only six months to live.
This trial is like the “canary in the coal mine,” said Tim Litzenburg, a lawyer representing Johnson. “The world is watching, and it’s unofficially a bellwether case.” This is because there are many other cases currently being consolidated to go to trial against Monsanto. There are thousands of plaintiffs in St. Louis, approximately 300 cases in San Francisco, and dozens of lawsuits that have been filed in Oakland. While the Johnson verdict won’t directly influence these outcomes, it will certainly be an indicator for how these other trials may go.
The crux of this lawsuit is based on emails that Monsanto in fact acknowledged that their weedkiller is linked to cancer. “The internal correspondence noted by Johnson could support a jury finding that Monsanto has long been aware of the risk that its glyphosate-based herbicides are carcinogenic [can cause cancer] … but has continuously sought to influence the scientific literature to prevent its internal concerns from reaching the public sphere and to bolster its defenses in products liability actions,” stated Judge Curtis Karnow. “Thus there are triable issues of material fact.”
If you have been diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma or other blood cancers, you may be able to join the thousands of others who are making a claim against Monsanto. For decades Roundup has been linked to these specific types of cancers, and yet Monsanto continues to deny these findings and they refuse to put a warning label on their product. Cancer treatments are expensive and you may now be unable to work. Contact us today to see if you are eligible for financial compensation, but time is limited. Trials are going to court soon and once they are settled, it may be too late for you to receive the financial help that is owed to you.