From Illinois Central Railroad, a news release:
A federal jury in Natchez, Mississippi, on March 8, 2010, found that Mississippi plaintiffs' attorneys William Guy and Thomas Brock committed fraud and breached the duty of good faith and fair dealing in asbestos claims they filed against Illinois Central Railroad. The plaintiffs' lawyers filed lawsuits on behalf of two individuals who had already received compensation for asbestos-related injuries in a previous lawsuit.
The jury awarded Illinois Central full repayment of the $210,000 the company had paid on the claim as well as $210,000 in punitive damages. The clients, also sued but held not liable in trial, testified that the two lawyers knew of their previous claims.
Mark Behrens of Shook, Hardy & Bacon tells us the case is significant because this is the first time a jury has found that as asbestos plaintiffs' lawyers committed fraud.
"Illinois Central is pleased that a Mississippi federal jury held these plaintiffs' lawyers liable for fraud in asbestos claims against us," said Karen Phillips, Vice President of Public and Government Affairs for Illinois Central. "Our company will continue to aggressively pursue all suspected fraud or litigation abuses."
- Natchez Democrat, "Attorneys found guilty of fraud"
- Legal Newsline, "Federal jury finds fraud on part of asbestos lawyers."
- Amended complaint, Illinois Central v Harried and Guy and Brock