Report: Miss. jury hands out largest asbestos verdict ever

Jessica M. Karmasek May 9, 2011, 1:18pm


RALEIGH, Miss. (Legal Newsline) - A Smith County, Miss., jury last week awarded a Mississippi man the largest asbestos verdict in U.S. history -- $322 million.

The man, Thomas Brown Jr. claimed he inhaled asbestos dust while mixing drilling mud sold and manufactured by Chevron Phillips Chemical Co., or CP Chem, and Union Carbide Corp.

According to the Laurel Leader-Call, a newspaper in nearby Laurel, Miss., the verdict was handed down Wednesday following more than two weeks of testimony.

The jury, which found that the two companies were liable for defectively designing their product and failure to provide warning, awarded $300 million in punitive damages and $22 million in actual damages.

According to the newspaper, Brown was diagnosed with the lung disease asbestosis, and is on oxygen 24-hours a day.

Representing CP Chem was Alex Cosculluela of Adams & Reese of Houston, Texas; Jeffrey Trotter of Adams & Reese of Jackson; Robert Johnson of Natchez; and David Garner of Raleigh. Representing Union Carbide was Michael Terry of Hartline, Dacus Barger Dreyer, LLP of Corpus Christi and Marcy Croft of Forman Perry Watkins Krutz & Tardy of Jackson.

Brown was represented by Allen Hossley, Dawn Smith and Ray Turcotte of the Hossley Embry law firm in Dallas, and Gene Tullos and Gary King of Tullos & Tullos of Raleigh.

From Legal Newsline: Reach Jessica Karmasek by e-mail at

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