Watchdog Group Demands DOJ Investigate Destruction of Transvaginal Mesh Documents
A corporate watchdog group has issued a petition on its website to demand that the federal Department of Justice investigate whether or not Johnson & Johnson deliberately destroyed documents related to the safety and efficacy of transvaginal mesh devices.
Corporate Action Network, a nonprofit group that seeks to hold businesses accountable for injuries and injustices towards individuals, recently created a website dedicated to Johnson & Johnson’s destruction of documents that should have been available as evidence in their transvaginal mesh multidistrict litigation (MDL).
On December 2nd, a motion was filed against Ethicon, J&J’s transvaginal mesh subsidiary, claiming that the manufacturer intentionally lost or destroyed documents that would help the plaintiffs’ transvaginal mesh cases, so that the plaintiffs cannot fully represent their cases in court. In February of this year, as the current bellwether case against Ethicon was headed to trial, Cheryl Eifert, a court official for the case, concluded that J&J did in fact lose or destroy those documents. However, Eifert noted that there is no evidence that the company intentionally lost or destroyed the documents, but the company was negligent in destroying them.
“Hundreds of thousands of women continue to suffer ongoing, severe harm,” from J&J’s pelvic mesh implants, network spokeswoman Levana Layendecker said during a call with reporters. “I hope Johnson & Johnson is held accountable for their failure to warn.”
“Evidence we’ve presented at trial showed they knew these implants would cause complications and they just didn’t care. Many women are now disabled and they can’t leave their beds, they’re in so much pain,” Jane Akre said during the conference call. Akre is the founder of an online network for pelvic mesh implant “survivors,” said J&J and Ethicon were aware of potential harm and did not warn the public about the dangerous impact of transvaginal mesh devices.
“Women have killed themselves because the pain eclipses childbirth pain, it’s that bad,” Akre said in an interview.
However, Matthew Johnson, a spokesperson for Johnson & Johnson’s Ethicon unit, stated that the company has acted appropriately in this case.
“Ethicon has engaged in extensive efforts to preserve and produce evidence in the pelvic mesh (federal litigation) which has led to the production of millions of pages of documents to date. In the context of Ethicon’s substantial document production, the inadvertent loss of certain, limited documents has not prejudiced plaintiffs in their ability to pursue their claims,” he said.
The Strom Law Firm Fights for Women in Transvaginal Mesh Personal Injury Case
Transvaginal mesh kits were initially produced to help with pelvic organ prolapse and stress urinary incontinence. Several varieties of mesh kits exist, but transvaginal mesh specifically was supposed to produce less scarring and pain, because the procedure was less invasive. However, vaginal mesh slings can cause a host of problems, including organ perforation, infection, internal scarring, continued organ prolapse, and bleeding. If you or a loved one has pelvic organ prolapse or stress urinary incontinence, have had a transvaginal mesh device implanted, and have since experienced detrimental complications, you may be entitled to compensation. The experienced lawyers at Strom Law, LLC can help. We offer free consultations, so please contact us today, and we can help get you on the road to recovery. 803.252.4800