More Florida Verdicts against Cigarette Companies – Buonomo

On May 20, 2010 after a three-week trial, a six-person Fort Lauderdale, Florida jury returned a verdict in favor of Connie Buonomo, the widow of Matthew Buonomo, who died from chronic obstructive lung disease in 2008 at the age of 80.Mr. Buonomo had started smoking as a teenager.

The defendant, R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. was ordered to pay $5 million in compensatory damages and $25 million in punitive damages. After deliberating for five hours, the jury unanimously determined that R.J. Reynolds was 77.5 percent responsible for Mr. Buonomo’s death, compared with 22.5 percent responsibility for the deceased. Of the 19 “Engle Progeny” cases that have reached a jury verdict since February 2009, 16 of the verdicts have been for the plaintiffs.

See the Sun-Sentinel’s account.

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About Mark Gottlieb

Mark Gottlieb joined the staff of the Public Health Advocacy Institute in 1993 after graduating from Northeastern University School of Law. His efforts have focused on researching tobacco litigation as a public health strategy as director of the Tobacco Products Liability Project, reducing the harm caused by secondhand tobacco smoke through a variety of legal and policy approaches, fostering scholarship using tobacco industry documents, and, more recently, examining legal and policy approaches to address obesity. He is the Executive Director of the Institute and lives in Cambridge, MA with his wife and three children.