Report: J&J facing criminal investigation in ongoing talc scandal

July 15, 2019

The Department of Justice is reportedly investigating claims that Johnson and Johnson officials lied about cancer risks tied to its popular baby powder. 

The company is already staring down about 14,000 lawsuits from plaintiffs who say that asbestos found in J&J’s talcum powder products gave them illnesses such as ovarian cancer and mesothelioma. Although J&J has successfully defended itself in several of the cases, nearly a dozen juries have decided against the company, ordering nearly $5 billion in payouts to plaintiffs. 

Now, Bloomberg has reported that the DOJ is attempting to decipher if the company knew about the presence of asbestos in its products and failed to warn consumers. Earlier this year, J&J reported that it had received a subpoena from the DOJ and that it is fully cooperating with the investigation. The company has long claimed that its baby powder does not cause cancer and said that its assessment is supported by “decades of independent clinical evidence.”  

Read the Wall Street Journal report.