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24.05.2000 – 12:09

Philip Morris GmbH

Fifth Consecutive Rejection in Germany of Smokers\047 Request for Legal Aid

    Lausanne/Switzerland (ots-PRNewswire) - On May 12, following a string of identical decisions, the Regional Court of Hagen, Germany, dismissed another smoker's request for legal aid. The smoker had sought legal aid to pay for litigation against Philip Morris Germany.

    This is the latest of five decisions by five different Regional Courts in Germany denying requests for legal aid by smokers suing tobacco companies. Although the facts of the cases were different, the Courts decided in each case that there was no basis for an award of legal aid to pursue these claims. These decisions are significant as the German Courts each time analysed the merits of each case as part of the process of deciding whether to grant legal aid. As in previous cases, the application for legal aid in the case "Kuehn vs. PMG, RJR (JTI)" has been denied because the Court found that no "reasonable likelihood of success" existed. Although these decisions do not cause the cases to go away, they provide tremendous insight into the Courts' ultimate disposition.

    Speaking for Philip Morris Europe SA, Mark Transon said "These decisions reflect the view held by most Europeans that the decision to smoke is one of adult choice". He added "The time has come to put behind us the acrimony that has sometimes characterised the issues surrounding tobacco and smoking. Our aim is to establish a constructive and lasting dialogue with all concerned parties, in Germany and elsewhere. We want to find mutually acceptable solutions that address the need to prevent underage smoking, the right of adults to make the individual decision to smoke and the legitimate concerns of the public health community."

ots Original Text Service: Philip Morris Europe SA Internet: http://recherche.newsaktuell.de

Contact: Mark Transon, Philip Morris Europe SA, +4121 618 6778

Original-Content von: Philip Morris GmbH, übermittelt durch news aktuell

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