INDIANAPOLIS, May 9, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Eli Lilly and Company (NYSE: LLY) today announced that the 2nd Circuit of the Labor Court of Paulinia in the state of Sao Paulo, Brazil, has ruled against the company's local subsidiary, Eli Lilly do Brasil, in a labor case alleging some employees were exposed to hazardous materials in a manufacturing facility operated by the company between 1977 and 2003. The judge estimated the impact of its order to be approximately $450 million.
A group of former employees in Brazil allege they were exposed to chemical substances at the manufacturing facility. However, the alleged contaminants – benzene and heavy metals – were never used in the manufacturing operations at the facility. In addition, the published ruling is based on inaccurate scientific claims, as well as mathematical errors.
"Safety of our employees around the world is paramount," said Michael J. Harrington, senior vice president and general counsel for Lilly. "In this case, there is absolutely no basis for the court's decision that employees were harmed based on extensive scientific and medical assessments conducted by third party health experts, as well as by Lilly.
"For that reason, we strongly disagree with the court's ruling and will appeal this decision."About Eli Lilly and Company Lilly is a global healthcare leader that unites caring with discovery to make life better for people around the world. We were founded more than a century ago by a man committed to creating high-quality medicines that meet real needs, and today we remain true to that mission in all our work. Across the globe, Lilly employees work to discover and bring life-changing medicines to those who need them, improve the understanding and management of disease, and give back to communities through philanthropy and volunteerism.