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Appeal court says US cannot seek payout from tobacco firms

BMJ 2005; 330 doi: http://dx.doi.org/10.1136/bmj.330.7487.323 (Published 10 February 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;330:323
  1. Anne Harding
  1. New Jersey

    The US government's case against the tobacco industry received a major blow last week when an appeal court ruled that federal government had no right to recover $280bn (£150bn; €220bn) in past profits from the industry.

    The Department of Justice has charged that tobacco companies made the huge sum by selling cigarettes to minors and must “disgorge” (hand over to the government) these profits as a punishment to help prevent future wrongdoing (BMJ 2004;329: 701). It is suing six tobacco …

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