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First California Vioxx Trial to Start June 21, 2006

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With the first of two Vioxx trials to start on June 21, 2006, Merck & Co. has filed a motion for summary judgment on the case of a 73 year-old man who had a heart attack after taking Vioxx. The basis of the motion is that the lawsuit was filed after the statute of limitations had ran in California. A hearing on that motion is set for June 15, 2006. Although the motion is most likely to be denied, a grant of summary judgment could end the case before it even really begins for the former Vioxx user. Los Angeles State Court Judge Victoria Chaney is presiding over the matter along with another case involving a 66 year-old man named Stewart Grossberg, who also suffered a heart attack after taking Vioxx. Merck’s summary judgment motion was filed soon after the mega drug manufacture was hit with a $32 million verdict in Texas where a 71 year-old man died from a heart attack after taking Vioxx.

According to Law.Com

“In light of the recent verdicts, and that recent study, it wouldn’t be surprising if they were re-evaluating their approach to individual cases,” said Thomas Dewey, a partner at New York-based Dewey Pegno & Kramarsky who specializes in complex civil litigation but is not involved in the Vioxx cases.

Calls to Merck were referred to the company’s Los Angeles lawyer, Ralph Campillo, a partner at San Francisco-based Sedgwick, Detert, Moran & Arnold. Campillo said that the recent survey and jury verdict have nothing to do with the summary judgment motion, which argues that the case should be thrown out because it was filed after the statute of limitations ran.

The next month could to an interesting one for the State of California and those who suffered from the effects of Vioxx there. Should the summary judgment motions be denied and these victims of Vioxx be allowed their day in court, Merck & Co. could be in serious trouble for some of its acts and omissions concerning the multi-billion drug Vioxx.

For more info the California Vioxx Trials click here…