Large cigarette manufacturers finally not have to pay 1.13 billion in compensation to victims of smoking. The companies argued that such compensation would drive straight to bankruptcy.
In a judgment rendered on Thursday, the Court of Appeal reversed the decision of the Superior Court, stating that the reasons given for the immediate payment of such a sum were “weak”. “The injury for appellants would have serious and significant disadvantages. Thus, provisional enforcement is canceled, “wrote the three judges.
After a 251-day trial, the judge of the Superior Court Brian Riordan had condemned last June tobacco companies Imperial Tobacco, Rothmans, Benson & Hedges and JTI-Macdonald to pay 15 billion in punitive and moral damages to smokers and ex -fumeurs under two class actions.
The judge also imposed a provisional execution, in which he ordered the tobacco companies to pay as soon as possible 1.13 billion to victims. This decision has been overturned by the Court of Appeal.
This victory does not mean the end of judicial proceedings. Tobacco companies have already said they will appeal the judgment. Many observers even predict that the conflict could go to the Supreme Court.