On Friday, August 18, 2017, a federal jury in Mississippi rendered a defense verdict in favor of Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and Bayer HealthCare Pharmaceuticals, Inc. in a bellwether trial involving the prescription blood thinner Xarelto. The plaintiff alleged Xarelto caused gastrointestinal bleeding resulting in her hospitalization. Federal District Court Judge Eldon E. Fallon presided over the case. Notwithstanding the claims and evidence presented by the plaintiff, a jury returned what is now the third straight defense verdict for Janssen and Bayer in several bellwether trials scheduled in a federal multi-district litigation involving Xarelto where the plaintiffs allege defendants did not warn about the possibility of dangerous internal bleeding associated with the drug.
Previously, in May 2017 and June 2017, two federal juries in Louisiana returned defense verdicts in favor of Janssen and Bayer in the multi-district Xarelto litigation. In both cases, the plaintiffs claimed the defendants did not provide sufficient warnings to physicians about serious bleeding purportedly caused by the prescription drug. After hearing the evidence presented, the respective juries returned defense verdicts, concluding that Janssen and Bayer provided adequate warnings to treating physicians regarding the safe use of Xarelto.
There is a fourth bellwether trial scheduled to take place in the very near future in the multi-district Xarelto litigation where there are approximately 15,000 other cases currently pending. Three consecutive defense verdicts, though, will hopefully dissuade plaintiffs’ counsel from continuing to pursue these claims.