Ontario Sues Tobacco Companies For Billions


Wow! The province of Ontario, Canada filed a $50 billion dollar lawsuit yesterday (September 29) towards several tobacco companies to try and recover smoke-related health costs that have occured since 1955.

New York Times reports, Ontario is now the third province to join British Columbia and New Brunswick in their attempts to try and recover health care costs from the tobacco companies. All three provinces passed legislation enabling their legal actions, an approach that was upheld by the Supreme Court of Canada in 2005.

“We believe that taxpayers should be compensated for the costs that they have paid,” Chris Bentley, the province’s attorney general, told reporters in Toronto.
Eric Gagnon, a spokesman for Imperial Tobacco, called the government “hypocritical” for filing a lawsuit.

“What’s happening is double dipping,” Mr. Gagnon said from the company’s headquarters in Montreal. “You’re taking a billion dollars of taxation out of the industry every year, then you turn around and sue the industry.”

"Like plaintiffs in some lawsuits against tobacco companies in the United States and elsewhere, Ontario is arguing that the tobacco makers have known for decades that their products are addictive and dangerous to health but have done little or nothing to mitigate their effects and have been late to warn consumers.

The defendants in the case include the Altria Group of Richmond, Va., and some of its Philip Morris subsidiaries, British American Tobacco of London and its Canadian unit Imperial Tobacco as well as R. J. Reynolds and JTI-Macdonald, a Japan Tobacco unit that is in bankruptcy proceedings."


Emily B said...

I like it. Now can they sue the smokers (past and present) too, for making the ill-advised and costly choice to smoke?

Post a Comment