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PHILLY JURY AWARDS $ 3M IN HRT TRIAL PHILADELPHIA � A jury has reached a $3 million compensatory damages verdict in the re-trial of the Complex Litigation Center’s first hormone therapy trial. The first jury in Nelson v. Wyeth had concluded in mid-October that Wyeth, if found liable during the second phase in the bifurcated litigation, would have to pay the action’s wife-and-husband plaintiffs $1.5 million. At one point, it seemed as if a mistrial might be declared post-verdict after the court learned that one juror had threatened another with a detached table leg during deliberations. But ultimately, Senior Judge Norman Ackerman — the former head of the CLC — made the decision to have a second go-around after the new year when defendant Wyeth revealed that one juror had failed to disclose a felony theft conviction during voir dire. In the meantime, the CLC’s second hormone therapy trial — captioned Daniel v. Wyeth — ended last month with a $1.5 million compensatory damages verdict for that matter’s wife-and-husband plaintiffs. That case was not reverse bifurcated. However Senior Judge Myrna Field disagreed with the jury’s conclusion that punitive damages were warranted in the case and went on to seal the Daniel jury’s noncompensatory damages award. Field held that that award can be unsealed if an appellate court reverses her and sides with the jury on the punitive damages issue. Senior Judge Ricardo Jackson — who has presided over the roughly month-long re-trial in Nelson, also not reverse bifurcated — went one step further than Field when it came to the question of punitive damages in this winter’s re-trial: He granted a Wyeth motion for compulsory nonsuit on the matter’s punitive damages claim soon after the plaintiffs had rested.

The Legal Intelligencer

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