Ore. Supreme Court upholds tobacco damages
Feb 01,2008 00:00 by UPI

PORTLAND, Ore. - The Oregon Supreme Court upheld a $79.5 million award Thursday against Philip Morris for the family of a man who died of lung cancer.

The award has been going through the courts since a 1999 trial in Multnomah County, The (Portland) Oregonian reported. The U.S. Supreme Court overturned the verdict twice, sending it back to Oregon.

Jesse Williams died in 1997. Two years later, a jury ruled that his family should get $821,485 in compensatory damages and $79.5 million in punitive damages.

The U.S. Supreme Court returned the case to the Oregon court in 2003, ordering the justices to consider whether punitive damages should be capped at nine times the amount of compensatory damages. The Oregon court rejected that calculation.

In 2005, the U.S. Supreme Court once again returned the case to Oregon after ruling on a narrower issue.

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