Judge slashes San Francisco lawsuit award in half
Superior Court Judge John Munter upheld the landmark verdict issued by a San Francisco jury in February against Philip Morris but said the jury's decision on punitive damages was "excessive".
Judge Munter retained the compensatory damages of $15 million awarded to Patricia Henley, a former three-pack-a-day smoker with lung cancer, to cover medical expenses, pain and suffering. However, he cut the $50 million punitive award by 50%, reducing it to $25 million. He said that a damage award of $25 million was enough to punish Philip Morris for misleading the public about the dangers of smoking and marketing cigarettes to teenagers.