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Press release from Business Wire

Federal Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Seeking Medical Monitoring Class Action in Cigarette Case

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Federal Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Seeking Medical Monitoring Class Action in Cigarette Case15:55 EST Thursday, January 13, 2011 RICHMOND, Va. (Business Wire) -- The United States District Court Eastern District of New York today dismissed a lawsuit by a group of New York plaintiffs seeking class certification in a medical monitoring lawsuit filed against Philip Morris USA. The Court ruled that there was no legal basis for claims made by plaintiffs in Caronia v. Philip Morris USA requesting that the company pay for annual low-dose CT scans for long-term smokers to determine whether they have lung cancer. The court dismissed the lawsuit finding that plaintiffs' medical monitoring and implied warranty claims were legally invalid. “This decision recognizes that the plaintiffs were unable to establish that the defendant's tortious conduct ‘is what caused them to be exposed to harmful smoke sufficient to require medical monitoring. . .',” said Murray Garnick, Altria Client Services senior vice president and associate general counsel, speaking on behalf of Philip Morris USA. “We believe the Court's sound reasoning applies to other medical monitoring cases brought against Philip Morris USA.” Although noting that the dismissal of the medical monitoring and implied warranty claims rendered plaintiffs' class certification request moot, the Court commented, “Although the certification motion is no longer before the Court, the Court does note its concern that individual issues, especially questions of comparative fault – a defense that seems to be available to Philip Morris notwithstanding the fact that the plaintiffs are asking only for equitable relief – would likely defeat any effort to certify a class in this litigation.” ALCS Media Relations(804) 484-8897