Former smoker to discuss $300 million verdict

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — A former smoker in South Florida is speaking out about her $300 million verdict against Philip Morris USA.

A jury on Thursday ordered Philip Morris to pay 61-year-old Cindy Naugle what is believed to be the largest award to date among thousands of lawsuits filed in the state against tobacco companies. Naugle is holding a press conference with her attorneys on Friday morning in Fort Lauderdale to discuss the decision.

The award amounts to $56 million in compensatory and $244 million in punitive damages against Richmond, Virginia-based Philip Morris USA, a unit of Altria Group Inc. The company said it will seek further review of the verdict.

The case is one of 8,000 lawsuits filed against tobacco companies by Florida smokers and their families.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Smokers should try the electronic cigarette. Much better than the alternative’s… such as death!