Johnson & Johnson faces criminal probe related to baby powder — International Business

Marco Green
July 15, 2019

US Department of Justice had chose to trail a criminal investigation against American multinational conglomerate, Johnson & Johnson, headquartered in New Brunswick, New Jersey, on whether the Pharmaceutical, medical device and consumer goods company had lied about presence of cancer-causing asbestos in its baby talc powder, a Bloomberg report had revealed on Friday, the 12th of July 2019, citing people familiar with the situation.

Lawsuits related to the presence of carcinogens in its baby powder have unearthed internal memos from as far back as the 1960s that warn asbestos detected in the company's talc products was a "severe health hazard" that could pose a legal risk.

Shares of Johnson & Johnson fell as much as 6% Friday amid reports the US Justice Department is pursuing a criminal investigation into the company.

A Justice Department spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The companies must pay Schmitz almost $10 million, a jury said in a state court in Oakland.

Schmitz told a jury she applied J&J's Baby Powder or Colgate's Cashmere Bouquet after taking a shower for most of her life. The jury concluded that the powder was a cause of Schmitz's mesothelioma, a cancer linked to asbestos exposure.

J&J has since sold the Shower-to-Shower brand to another company that has an agreement with J&J protecting it from any asbestos lawsuits linked to the brand, according to Bloomberg.

The probe comes at the same time as a regulatory investigation and civil claims by thousands of cancer patients that allege the company's Baby Powder products caused their illnesses.

The company has asked a federal judge to move all cases to DE, as it faces lawsuits nationwide, Bloomberg said.

Shares of J&J were down more than 4% in early afternoon trading.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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