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Ricky Bagolie
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Merck Gets Hit For $50 million in Federal Vioxx Trial

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A retired FBI agent who suffered a heart attack after taking the painkiller
Vioxx is entitled to $50 million in compensatory damages from drug
manufacturer Merck & Co., a federal jury found Thursday.

The jury said Merck was negligent for failing to adequately warn doctors
about the risks associated with the drug. The jury also found that Merck
“knowingly misrepresented or failed to disclose” information about the drug
to the plaintiff’s doctors.

The same jury was to deliberate later in the day on possible punitive
damages.

The verdict, in U.S. District Court in New Orleans, narrows Merck’s slight
edge on the overall trial scorecard, with the drug maker winning five trials
and losing four. The case was one of more than 14,000 lawsuits against Merck
over Vioxx