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Frito-Lay Facing Lawsuit over All Natural Claims

Chris Shake has filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York against Frito-Lay North America Inc. and parent company PepsiCo Inc., alleging Frito-Lay mislead consumers through the claims that SunChips and Tostitos were made with “all-natural ingredients,” when in fact, independent testing found they were made with corn and vegetable oils made from genetically modified plants.

According to the lawsuit, Shake said he paid an additional 10 cents per ounce for the “all natural” chips, and never would have paid the higher price if he had known they were not “all natural.” The lawsuit states that, “genetically modified organisms are created artificially in a laboratory by swapping genetic material across species to exhibit traits not naturally theirs.” And that, “Since a reasonable consumer assumes that seeds created in such a way are not ‘all natural,’ advertising Tostitos and SunChips as natural is deceptive and likely to mislead a reasonable consumer.” More Frito-Lay Facing Lawsuit over All Natural Claims

Roller Coaster Crash Spurs Two $1 Million Lawsuits

George Roseberry and Brittney Sims have filed two lawsuits in U.S. District Court in Roanoke, Virginia against Deggeller Attractions alleging they suffered “severe and permanent injuries” on the Riptide roller coaster at the Salem fair last summer.

According to the lawsuits, the car they were in came to a stop at the top of the roller coaster and was rear-ended by a second car. The suit says that the two plaintiffs and other riders in the car alerted the attendant that they were stopped, but the attendant “ignored the warning and proceeded to release a second car,” which then hit their car. Two adults and four children were taken from the ride to the hospital with injuries that rescue workers said were not life-threatening. More Roller Coaster Crash Spurs Two $1 Million Lawsuits

Johnson & Johnson Takes $3 Billion Charge for DePuy ASR Hip Implant Recall, Lawsuits

Johnson & Johnson set aside $3 billion in fourth quarter charges for consumer product liability litigation, mostly concerning the extensive recall of DePuy Orthopaedics ASR metal-on-metal hip replacement devices, which were found to fail prematurely and shed metal particles into the body and cause disabling disabilities.

A worldwide recall of DePuy’s  ASR Hip Resurfacing System and   ASR Acetabular System was issued in August 2010,  after data from the National Joint Registry of England and Wales showed that 1 out of every 8 patients (12%-13%) experienced failure of the implants  within five years of receiving them. More Johnson & Johnson Takes $3 Billion Charge for DePuy ASR Hip Implant Recall, Lawsuits

Costa Concordia Crew Member Files Lawsuit

Gary Lobaton filed a lawsuit against cruise line giant Carnival Corp., and its Italian unit Costa Crociere in U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois over the wreck of the Costa Concordia. The lawsuit seeks class action status on behalf of nearly 3,200 passengers and 1,000 crew members and their families.

According to the lawsuit, “The defendants failed to properly and timely notify all plaintiffs on board of the deadly and dangerous condition of the cruise ship as to avoid injury and death.” The lawsuit also says the crew and passengers “were abandoned by the captain.” More Costa Concordia Crew Member Files Lawsuit

U.S. Can’t be sued over FEMA Trailers


The 5th Circuit Court panel ruled that residents in Alabama and Mississippi cannot sue the U.S. government over formaldehyde-laden trailers provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency when Hurricane Katrina destroyed hundreds of thousands of homes along the Gulf Coast.


The federal appeals court said the 10,000 residents represented by the lawsuit do not have subject matter jurisdiction to sue the government agency, as the trailers were provided free of charge and residents were under no obligation to live in them. More U.S. Can’t be sued over FEMA Trailers

Costa Concordia Offers Passengers $14,460 Compensation

Shortly after the first U.S. lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division, against Carnival Corp over the Costa Concordia disaster, the company offered each passenger who suffered no physical harm, $14,460 as compensation for lost luggage and psychological trauma. As part of the agreement between Costa representatives and Italian consumer groups, the company will also reimburse passengers for their travel expenses, medical expenses, and the full cost of the cruise.

The lawsuit, filed by crewmember Gary Lobaton, seeks class action status, and claims Lobaton was not aware of the “dangerous conditions” of the ship until it was too late to abandon. The potential class action lawsuit seeks a determination on whether Carnival deviated from international safety standard during the cruise. “Costa Concordia’s Captain, Francesco Schettino, delayed the order to abandon ship and deploy the lifeboats,” MSNBC reported the lawsuit as saying. More Costa Concordia Offers Passengers $14,460 Compensation

BP Hit with Whistleblower Lawsuit over Oil Spill Cleanup

Former BP employee August Walter has filed a whistleblower lawsuit against the company, claiming he was terminated after he alleged that one of his bosses did not provide the Coast Guard with the “true status” of what substances needed to be cleaned and manipulated data on shoreline cleanup.

The lawsuit also says that Walter refused to misrepresent that Mississippi cleanup was nearer completion than it actually was, and that he was fired in retaliation for his complaints against BP, saying they were not following environmental regulations and were “picking and choosing what oil to pick up.” Walter alleges that BP took “short cuts” during the cleanup operation, and that a BP official said the company would not clean up oil debris smaller than tar balls.   More BP Hit with Whistleblower Lawsuit over Oil Spill Cleanup

Former Pfizer Employees File Lawsuit over Imprudent Investment Policies

A lawsuit seeking class action status has been filed by six former Pfizer employees in Puerto Rico federal court alleging the drug company failed to properly manage its retirement plans, causing hundreds of millions of dollars to be lost over the past decade.

The lawsuit claims Pfizer employees were able to accumulate large amounts of company stock that left employees exceptionally vulnerable to fluctuations in the market. The suit says that millions of dollars of retirement funds were lost when negative press about two drugs caused the stock to drop 11 percent in one day alone. More Former Pfizer Employees File Lawsuit over Imprudent Investment Policies

Novartis Settles Overtime Lawsuit for $99 Million

U.S. District Judge Paul Crotty in Manhattan has tentatively approved a $99 million settlement with Novartis over a class action lawsuit filed in 2006 by 7,000 former and current sales representatives who claimed they were denied overtime pay. A final approval hearing is scheduled on May 31, 2012.

“We believe this settlement is in the best interest of our employees and the company,” Andre Wyss, president of Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp., said in a statement. “We have been litigating this case for nearly six years and the company has determined that it is time to resolve these wage and hours claims,” Bloomberg Businessweek reported. More Novartis Settles Overtime Lawsuit for $99 Million

Tennessee Nursing Home hit with $15 million Wrongful Death Lawsuit

The family of William Warden, 93, has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Erwin Health Care Center (EHC) in Unicoi County, Tennessee, alleging the facility waited two full days before notifying family members and physicians that Warden was “comatose.”

According to the lawsuit, Warden weighed 162 pounds on March 28, 2011, and was in good health on April 25th. On May 2nd however, medical notes indicated a decline in Warden’s health, with staff writing that he was “comatose,” though the nursing home didn’t report the decline to any doctor or family member until May 4, when EHC transferred Warden to a local hospital. More Tennessee Nursing Home hit with $15 million Wrongful Death Lawsuit