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Witness tampering allegations are something U.S. District Judge Ed Kinkeade of Dallas has seen a lot in criminal cases, but never before in a civil lawsuit in his court.

That may help explain why the Dallas judge took strong action on Oct. 16 and told lawyers in a hip implant bellwether trial that he would have the FBI and the U.S. Attorney’s office question a New York doctor and others about a conversation the doctor had just a few days before he was scheduled to testify at the trial.

In an affidavit filed in Alicea v. DePuy Orthopaedics  on Oct. 15, New York orthopedic surgeon David Shein alleged that a DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. sales representative told him during a surgery-related conversation at his hospital in the Bronx on Oct. 13 that “there could be ramifications” for the doctor’s medical practice in connection with his upcoming Dallas testimony. Depuy Orthopaedics is a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson.

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