Three major cigarette companies have been ordered to pay smokers $15 billion dollars in what is believed to be the biggest class action lawsuit in Canada. The 3 companies have been accused of lying to their customers for 50 years about the health risks involved with smoking, colluding to hide that information from the public, and choosing profits over the health of their customers.
The three firms are Imperial Tobacco, Rothmans/Benson & Hedges and JTI-Macdonald. The judge hasn't yet decided on how those funds will be distributed.
This is a huge step for accountability to show companies in the future that they cannot do whatever they want and then just walk away. The three firms are planning on appealing the decision on the grounds that there have been warning on their packs for the last years.
More than one million Quebecers were represented in the lawsuit.