Bayer AG (BAYRY) won a tentative court victory Wednesday after a San Francisco Superior Court Judge indicated she would vacate a $250 million jury verdict for punitive damages awarded to a groundskeeper who claimed his terminal cancer was caused by Roundup, a weed killer produced by Monsanto.
San Francisco Superior Court Judge Suzanne Boloanos issued a tentative ruling saying she will likely order a new trial in the case, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
DeWayne Johnson, a former groundskeeper, claimed that the company failed to warn him and other users of the danger associated with Roundup exposure.
A jury concurred and awarded him $39 million in compensatory damages and $250 million in punitive damages on the grounds that the company acted with "malice and oppression."
However, Bolanos said Johnson had failed to demonstrate "clear and convincing evidence of malice or oppression" on the part of Monsanto.
The company faces thousands of similar lawsuits. The San Francisco case was among the first brough to trial.