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Johnson & Johnson Ordered to Pay More Than $1 Billion

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A federal jury in Dallas on Thursday ordered Johnson & Johnson and its DePuy Orthopaedics unit to pay more than $1 billion to six plaintiffs who said they were injured by Pinnacle hip implants, a lawyer for the plaintiffs said.

The jurors found that the metal-on-metal Pinnacle hip implants were defectively designed, and that the companies did not warn consumers of the risks.

The six plaintiffs are California residents who were implanted with the hip devices and experienced tissue death, bone erosion and other injuries they attributed to design flaws.

The plaintiffs claim the companies promoted the devices as lasting longer than devices that include ceramic or plastic materials.

Johnson & Johnson and DePuy are facing nearly 8,400 Pinnacle-related lawsuits, which have been consolidated in federal court in Texas. Test cases have been selected for trial, and the outcomes will help gauge the value of the remaining claims.

Mark Lanier, lawyer for the plaintiffs, said the verdict was “a message loud and clear” that Johnson & Johnson has “a really nasty part of their business they need to clean up.”

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