Takeda Jury Asked to Find Company Liable for Man’s Cancer Death

Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. should be found liable for causing the bladder-cancer death of a man who took its diabetes control drug Actos, an attorney for his widow and children told a Chicago jury today.

The survivors of William Whitlatch should be awarded at least $10 million for pain, suffering and financial losses arising from his death in 2006, lawyer Steven Maher told jurors. Delivering his closing arguments in a four-week trial, Maher said the drug company failed to disclose risks associated with the medicine.

The case is the first of more than 3,000 filed in Illinois to go to trial, Maher’s co-counsel, Tor Hoerman, said in an interview.

Takeda’s defense attorney Sherry Knutson countered in her summation that the Whitlatch attorneys had failed to prove Takeda’s drug caused the death of a man who’s diabetes and former smoking habit had increased his likelihood of developing cancer.

The case is Whitlatch v. Takeda Pharmaceuticals America Inc., 2012-L-006087, Cook County, Illinois, Circuit Court, Law Division (Chicago).

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