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More than 50 retired wrestlers sue WWE over brain injuries

By Wade Sheridan
More than 50 retired wrestlers sue WWE over brain injuries
Vince McMahon (C), chairman of World Wrestling Entertainment, holds a replica plaque during an unveiling ceremony on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Los Angeles on March 14, 2008. Standing next to McMahon are his son Shane (R) and wrestler Paul "Triple H" Levesque. The WWE is being sued by more than 50 retired wrestlers over "long term neurological injuries" they say they sustained during their time with the company. File photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | License Photo

STAMFORD, Conn., July 19 (UPI) -- WWE faces a class-action lawsuit filed Monday on behalf of more than 50 former professional wrestlers who claim the company is responsible for neurological injuries they suffer.

The lawsuit which accuses WWE chairman and CEO Vince McMahon of classifying his stars as independent contractors instead of employees to escape liability for injuries, alleges that the wrestlers received "long term neurological injuries" during their time with the company, which they claim failed to treat those injuries properly.

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"Instead of upholding its duty to its employees, WWE placed corporate gain over its wrestlers' health, safety, and financial security, choosing to leave the Plaintiffs severely injured and with no recourse to treat their damaged minds and bodies," stated the lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Connecticut, where WWE headquarters is located.

Notable wrestling stars Jimmy "Superfly" Snuka, Joseph "Road Warrior Animal" Laurinaitis, Paul "Mr. Wonderful" Orndorff, Salvador "Chavo" Guerrero IV, Chris "King Kong Bundy" Pallies, Terry "Sabu" Brunk and referees Earl and Dave Hebner are among the 53 plaintiffs.

In a statement to Bloomberg, WWE dismissed the lawsuit and the representing attorney Konstantine Kyros, who has previously filed failed lawsuits against the WWE with similar claims.

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"This is another ridiculous attempt by the same attorney who has previously filed class-action lawsuits against WWE, both of which have been dismissed. A federal judge has already found that this lawyer made patently false allegations about WWE, and this is more of the same," the entertainment giant said.

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