A Wyoming man’s recently-filed Monsanto Roundup lawsuit claims years of glyphosate exposure caused his cancer.
According to his federal complaint, Jason Ochs, a resident of Lander, regularly used Monsanto Roundup weed killer at his property from 2008 through 2014. Prior to that period, he was also exposed to the glyphosate-based herbicide as result of his neighbor’s use.
He was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 2012, which “was proximately and actually caused by exposure to Defendant’s Roundup products.”
Although Monsanto allegedly knew glyphosate posed a cancer risk by the 1980’s, the company’s marketing continued to represent Roundup products as safe.
“Defendant made these statements with complete disregard and reckless indifference to the safety of Plaintiff and the general public,” the Monsanto Roundup lawsuit claims. “Notwithstanding Defendant’s representations, scientific evidence has established a clear association between glyphosate and genotoxicity, inflammation and an increased risk of many cancers, including, but not limited to, (non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma), Multiple Myeloma and soft tissue sarcoma.”
The complaint further notes that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency at one time listed glyphosate as a possible human carcinogen and asserts that Monsanto pressured the agency into dropping the designation.
In 2015, the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) declared glyphosate a probable human carcinogen, after its independent review linked the weed killer to an increased risk of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and its various subtypes. However, Monsanto continues to deny any suggestion that Roundup causes cancer and has worked aggressively to discredit the IARC review.
More than 10,000 plaintiffs have filed similar claims in state and federal courts throughout the United States.
The nation’s first Roundup cancer trial concluded last August, when a San Francisco Superior Court jury awarded $289 million to a former school district groundskeeper with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. However, the judge overseeing that Monsanto Roundup lawsuit later reduced the award to $78 million.
A second case will head to trial on February 25th in the U.S. District Court, Northern District of California. The trial will take place in two phases, with the first focusing on causation. The second will focus on Bayer’s liability, but only if the jury finds for the plaintiff after the first phase conclusions.
Last month, the trial judge ruled that plaintiff’s attorneys could present evidence of Monsanto’s alleged efforts to ghostwrite studies or otherwise manipulate glyphosate research during the trial’s first phase.
The ruling was a win for Monsanto Roundup lawsuit plaintiffs throughout the United States, who assert that such evidence is vital to proving their claims.