Andrea E. Neuman
Andrea E. Neuman

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher partner Andrea E. Neuman and her colleagues won another victory for Dole Food Co. when a Delaware federal court dismissed a case involving nearly 3,000 foreign plaintiffs in the decades-long DBCP litigation.

The plaintiffs in Marquinez et al v. Dole Food Company Inc. et al No. 1:12-cv-000695-RGA (D. Del. May 27, 2014) claimed they were exposed to the pesticide dibromochloropropane while working on banana plantations in Panama, Ecuador, Guatemala and Costa Rica. According to the May 27 ruling by U.S. District Judge Richard D. Andrews, the claims were filed too late and exceeded the statute of limitations, despite the plaintiffs’ initially successful claim of class action tolling.

“Dole Food and Gibson Dunn partnered to put an end to meritless DBCP litigation against the company, and with this victory that end is here,” Neuman told WIPL.

Plaintiffs in the DBCP litigation claimed exposure to the pesticide going as far back as 1972, and began filing lawsuits against the company in 1993. According to the firm, when Gibson Dunn took over the nation-wide defense in 2009, there were nearly 10,000 claims pending against Dole Food in trial courts in California, Hawaii, Florida and Louisiana. Now, a single-plaintiff case remains pending against Dole Food in a Delaware trial court.

Along with the Delaware ruling, Neuman notched another victory in the matter earlier this year. Following her arguments, Dole Food obtained affirmance from the California Court of Appeal of a judgment against nearly 3,000 DBCP plaintiffs from the Philippines in Garcia Macasa v. Dole Food Co., Inc., BC467134 (Los Angeles Super. Court).

Along with Neuman, the Gibson Dunn team included partners William Thomson and Thomas Manakides.

Based in the firm’s New York office, Neuman co-chairs the Transnational Litigation Practice Group and is a member of the Environmental Litigation and Mass Tort, Appellate and Class Action Practice Groups. She serves as trial counsel for multinational corporations in complex international litigation. She represents clients in a range of industries, including oil and gas, food and agriculture, aerospace, technology, accounting, real estate and financial services. Neuman has also served as trial counsel for state and local governments.