Jury rules against tobacco suit plaintiff

March 21, 2012 at 2:20 PM

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., March 21 (UPI) -- A federal jury in Florida has ruled against a family that had been among thousands of plaintiffs in a class-action suit against tobacco companies.

The case had been brought by Anita Young McCray, representing the estate of her father, Mercedia Wilbert Walker.

McCray is one of about 8,000 plaintiffs who had filed lawsuits against the tobacco industry following a Florida Supreme Court ruling in 2006 that decertified a $145 billion jury's award in a class-action suit, The (Jacksonville) Florida Times-Union reported.

The Supreme Court allowed the plaintiffs to file individual suits using factual findings from the jury's 2000 verdict.

Less than a month ago, a jury ruled in favor of the tobacco industry in the first case from the class-action ruling tried at the federal level.

The Times-Union said as of February, plaintiffs from the class-action suit had won 37 of 57 cases at the state level with damages of more than $10 million in 13 of those cases, but no awards have been paid and most of the cases are still in appeals courts.

Philip Morris said in a statement about two-thirds of its cases tried in Florida since January have resulted in verdicts in favor of the tobacco company or in mistrials.

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