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Tobacco Companies In Court


Tobacco companies being sued by the Ontario government for 50  billion dollars are due in court today.

Anti-smoking advocate Michael Perley says he was told the 14 companies will argue the province has no jurisdiction to sue them because they’re controlled by foreign firms.

The cigarette makers — Imperial Tobacco Canada, J-T-I-Macdonald, and Rothmans, Benson and Hedges — are controlled by foreign parent companies.

In a statement released when the lawsuit was first announced Imperial called the suit a “cash grab.”

It also claimed it was “hypocrisy of the highest order” for the government to collect cigarette taxes and also sue tobacco makers.

The province says a law allows it to sue tobacco companies for any wrongdoing and lets it recover health-care costs linked to smoking-related diseases.

The 50  billion dollar figure covers the amount the province claims it has spent since 1955 on smokers who get sick

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