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Fraud verdict against Exxon struck down

Feb. 26, 2013 at 4:46 PM   |   Comments

ANNAPOLIS, Md., Feb. 26 (UPI) -- The Maryland Court of Appeals struck down a Baltimore County jury's $1 billion punitive damage verdict against ExxonMobil for an underground gas leak in 2006.

It also rejected parts of $650 million in compensatory damage awards, The Baltimore Sun reported Tuesday.

The Court of Appeals, the state's highest court, said it rejected the jury's key verdict, which held ExxonMobil guilty of fraud in its dealings with public officials and residents of the community of Jacksonville, Md., which relies on wells for its drinking water.

"Because we reverse the verdicts as to each of the alleged instances of fraud submitted to the jury, the award to the appellees of punitive damages must be reversed as well," the court said in one of two opinions released Tuesday.

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