Bayer gets new trial on punitive damages in $289 million weed-killer case

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Bayer AG’s Monsanto unit has received a tentative ruling granting a new trial on the $250 million in punitive damages awarded by a jury to a groundskeeper who alleged the company’s glyphosate-based weed killers, including Roundup, gave him cancer.

FILE PHOTO: Monsanto’s Roundup weedkiller atomizers are displayed for sale at a garden shop near Brussels, Belgium, November 27, 2017. REUTERS/Yves Herman/File Photo

According to Wednesday court filings in San Francisco’s Superior Court of California, Judge Suzanne Bolanos was considering whether to grant the company’s motion for a new trial on punitive damages.

A jury on Aug. 10 found Monsanto failed to warn school groundskeeper Dewayne Johnson and other consumers of the cancer risks posed by its weed killers. It awarded $39 million in compensatory and $250 million in punitive damages.

(This version of the story changes the first and second paragraph to reflect that ruling is tentative)

Reporting by Jim Christie in San Francisco, writing by Tina Bellon in New York; editing by Bill Berkrot

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