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Press release from Business Wire

Massachusetts Jury Rejects Smoker's Claim

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Massachusetts Jury Rejects Smoker's Claim16:29 EDT Thursday, May 26, 2011 RICHMOND, Va. (Business Wire) -- Philip Morris USA (PM USA) said today a jury in Worcester, MA returned a verdict for the defense, holding that Marlborocigarettes were not defectively designed and unreasonably dangerous. “We believe that the jury appropriately found that Marlboro cigarettes were not defectively designed and unreasonably dangerous,” said Murray Garnick, Altria Client Services senior vice president and associate general counsel, speaking on behalf of PM USA. “The jury correctly rejected the plaintiffs' theory that the company should have sold only virtually nicotine-free cigarettes.” Filed in 2001, the plaintiffs' sole claim in this case was that PM USA breached an implied warranty of merchantability in failing to market only virtually nicotine-free cigarettes. The plaintiffs had stipulated that the decedent was fully aware of the risks of cigarette addiction and lung cancer from smoking cigarettes and that the proposed virtually nicotine-free cigarette would be unacceptable to a vast majority of smokers. Today's verdict marks the second defense verdict for PM USA this month, following a May 16th jury's decision in favor of the company in a federal court in New York (Grill). These two cases are the first new individual smoking and health cases tried by the company in five years, with the exception of the Engle cases in Florida. The case is Haglund v. Philip Morris USA, Case No. 01-02367-C. ALCS Media Relations804-484-8897