A court in the United States has ordered Reynolds Tobacco Co., the country's second largest cigarette maker, to pay record punitive damages of $23.6 billion to the widow of a cigarette-smoking cancer victim.
Michael Johnson Sr. smoked the company’s Kool brand menthol cigarettes for over 20 years before dying of lung cancer in 1996 at the age of 36.
His widow, Cynthia Robinson, took action against Reynolds in 2008, seeking compensation for her husband's death. She argued the conspired to conceal the health hazards associated with its menthol cigarettes.
On Friday, the jury in northwestern Florida first awarded $17 million in compensatory damages and then emerged at 10 p.m. with a $23.6 billion punitive judgment.
See more at: