March 4, 1998 |
Philip Morris Chairman Geoffrey C. Bible, continuing his testimony Tuesday in a big tobacco trial here, was confronted with a blizzard of internal company memos concerning the narcotic effects of smoking, including one document that compared nicotine to morphine and cocaine, and described cigarettes as "nicotine delivery devices" along with nicotine patches and gum.
May 9, 1998 |
The $6.6-billion settlement of Minnesota's big anti-tobacco case represents a huge personal triumph for state Atty. Gen. Hubert H. Humphrey III, whose contrarian, hard-line assault on Big Tobacco belied his image as a steady, honest, but unremarkable, public servant stuck in the shadow of his famous father.
January 3, 1998 |
Brown & Williamson, a unit of BAT Industries in Britain, paid a $100,000 fine imposed by a Minnesota judge for failing to turn over papers from its American Tobacco unit. In a letter with the check, Louisville-based Brown & Williamson said it isn't waiving its right to appeal the fine, which was ordered by Ramsey County District Court Judge Kenneth Fitzpatrick. Brown & Williamson made the payment several days ahead of the court's 10-day deadline.
November 24, 1998 |
Controversial home equity lender First Alliance Mortgage Co. was hit with a lawsuit Monday by Minnesota authorities, who accused the Irvine firm of overcharging customers by thousands of dollars through hidden loan fees. Minnesota Atty. Gen. Hubert H. Humphrey III said First Alliance's employees rushed consumers through mountains of paperwork and used other "fraudulent schemes" to avoid telling borrowers about costs that ran as high as 30% of the amount being loaned.
February 8, 1998 |
When tobacco lawyers checked into their hotels for the state's anti-tobacco mega-trial, they were greeted by in-room copies of Minnesota Monthly with a beaming Jeanne Weigum on its cover. The magazine had named Weigum its 1997 Minnesotan of the Year, which must have given the tobacco folks pause. Unlike most people saluted in such a manner, Weigum is not an industrialist, philanthropist or cultural icon. She is a veteran anti-smoking activist.
February 3, 1998 |
Over heated defense objections, portions of some of the most scathing articles ever published about the tobacco industry in a scholarly medical journal were read to the jury in the massive case filed against the nation's cigarette companies by the state of Minnesota and Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Minnesota. Michael Ciresi, the lead plaintiff's attorney, read excerpts of a July 19, 1995, editorial in the Journal of the American Medical Assn. and two related articles.