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Pneumo Abex Liable Liable for $37M in Asbestos Brake Lining Case

Pneumo Abex was negligent in its failure to warn about the dangers of asbestos-containing brake linings and strictly liable for placing a defective product in the stream of commerce.

A Tampa, FL, jury has awarded nearly $37 million to asbestos plaintiffs in a brake lining exposure suit, finding Pneumo Abex 75% liable. The plaintiffs asserted the claims on behalf of Gary Hampton, who was allegedly exposed to asbestos in brake products while working as an automotive mechanic for seven years in the 1970s.

The Florida 13th Judicial Circuit court for Hillsborough County jury reached the verdict Aug. 27. Chief Judge Manuel Menendez Jr. presided over the two-and-a-half week trial, which ended after two hours of juror deliberations.

As a result of the exposure, the 65-year old Hampton developed peritoneal mesothelioma, the plaintiffs said.

Jurors awarded $36,984,800 at the conclusion of the trial and found Pneumo Abex negligent in its failure to warn Hampton about the dangers of asbestos-containing brake linings and strictly liable for placing a defective product in the stream of commerce.

Defendants said they were safe

Pneumo Abex was the lone remaining defendant at the time of the verdict, sources. Ford Motor Company reached a settlement agreement after one week or trial.

The defendants argued at trial that the brake products were safe and they were not negligent.

The plaintiffs were represented by David Jagolinzer of The Ferraro Law Firm in Miami. Testifying on behalf of the plaintiffs were Murray Finkelstein, M.D.; Eugene Mark, M.D.; Arnold Brody, M.D., Ph.D.; James Millette, Ph.D.; and Barry Castleman, Ph.D.

The case is Hampton, et al.  v. Pneumo Abex, et al., No. 13-CA-009741 (Fla. 13th Jud. Cir. Ct., Hillsborough Cty.).

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