Shares in Bayer tumbled 5% on Monday following a landmark decision by a Philadelphia jury, ordering the German pharmaceutical company to pay a staggering $2.25 billion to a man who claims he developed cancer from using its Roundup weedkiller.

Jury Awards $2 Billion in Punitive Damages

After a trial at the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, John McKivision was granted $2 billion in punitive damages and an additional $250 million in compensatory damages. McKivision alleged that his exposure to Bayer's glyphosate-based herbicide led to him being diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Recurrent Lawsuits Posing Challenges

This ruling comes amidst approximately 165,000 lawsuits that Bayer has been grappling with from Roundup users alleging that their use of the glyphosate-based weedkiller caused them to develop cancer. Glyphosate, the main ingredient in Roundup, was originally created by Monsanto in the 1970s before Bayer acquired the U.S. company for a staggering $66 billion in 2018.

Pledge to Appeal Verdict

In the face of the verdict, McKivision's attorneys Tom Kline and Jason Itkin emphasized the need for comprehensive reform within the multinational corporation. Bayer, on the other hand, expressed its intention to appeal the decision made by the Philadelphia court. The pharmaceutical giant has consistently denied any links between its glyphosate-based herbicides and the development of illnesses among its customers.

Disputing the Verdict

Bayer expressed its bewilderment over the jury's decision, contending that it contradicts scientific evidence and assessments conducted by regulators worldwide. The company released a statement saying, "We are confident that we have strong arguments on appeal to overturn this verdict or at least reduce the unconstitutionally excessive damages."

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