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A disgraceful suit takes one more body blow

WSJ.com - Justices Won't Hear Tobacco Case [Wall St. Journal registration required]

The Justice Department had attempted to claim $280 billion of tobacco company profits in the suit, which contends tobacco companies misled the American public about the dangers of smoking over the course of 50 years. But its case sustained a major blow in February when a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit voted 2-1 to bar the government request for the "disgorgement" of past tobacco profits. The appeals court ruling said the government couldn't use federal racketeering laws to go after the companies' past profits.

After the decision, the Justice Department sought a reversal from the high court. In its filings, the government argued that the lower courts had wrongly closed off its ability to seek the past profits.

I, and others, had written extensively about the legal absurdity of this government money-grab. [For one of my contributions, see here.] This doesn't put an end to the litigation, but I'm hoping it will shame Administration officials into euthanizing this suit.



Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy

Manhattan Institute


Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.