A Louisiana federal court ordered Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. and Eli Lilly & Co. to pay a combined $9 billion in punitive damages after a jury found they covered up the cancer risks of their Actos diabetes drug.
Japan-based Takeda was ordered to pay $6 billion in punitive damages, while Lilly, Takeda's co-defendant in the case, was ordered to pay $3 billion. The jury also awarded $1.475 million in compensatory damages.
Both Eli Lilly and Takeda plan to dispute the verdict. Legal experts said it was unlikely that such a large award would stand if both companies challenge the verdict, especially given that the U.S. Supreme Court has signaled that punitive verdicts, imposed for bad conduct, must be proportional to the awards of compensatory damages that underlie them.
Last year, state juries in California and Maryland ordered Takeda to pay a total of $8.2 million in compensatory damages to former Actos users; judges in both states threw out the verdicts.
Read the Bloomberg press release