Smokers Denied Class Action in California
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Reuters) - Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp., the maker of Kool and Lucky Strike, on Wednesday said a California court denied a class action suit against the cigarette maker, following the trend of courts rejecting mass class action cases
The case was decided in the California state superior court in San Diego and was filed against Brown & Williamson, a unit of British American Tobacco PLC. (BATS.L), on behalf of smokers seeking funding for programs to help people stop smoking.
``The court's decision continues the trend of federal and most state courts refusing to certify a class action in a smoking and health case,'' said Mitch Neuhauser, an attorney for the company.
The plaintiffs were seeking damages under several different common law causes, against eleven defendants, and on the premise of wrongful acts spanning over four decades, which Judge Ronald Prager rejected as ``inappropriate.''
The denial for class action comes on the heels of the April 7 Florida verdict awarding three sick smokers $12.7 million in a class action case, a trial that has weighed heavily on tobacco stocks over the last year. Florida is only one of three state courts that have not denied class certifications in lawsuits alleging injury from tobacco.