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Monsanto Ordered to Pay $93 Million to Small Town for Poisoning Citizens

Christina Sarich
July 25th, 2014
Updated 07/25/2014 at 2:05 am
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gmo monsanto crop money 263x164 Monsanto Ordered to Pay $93 Million to Small Town for Poisoning CitizensBig wins can happen in small places. The West Virginia State Supreme Court finalized a big blow to the biotech giant Monsanto this month, finishing a settlement causing Monsanto to pay $93 million to the tiny town of Nitro, West Virginia for poisoning citizens with Agent Orange chemicals.

The settlement was approved last year, but details were worked out only weeks ago as to how the funds were to be spent.

The settlement will require Monsanto to do the following:

  • $9 million will be spent to clean dioxin contaminated dust from 4500 homes.
  • $21 million will be spent to test to see if people have been poisoned with dioxin.
  • Citizens will be monitored for such poisoning for 30 years, not just a few months.
  • An additional $63 million is to be allotted if additional tests for dioxin contamination testing is necessary.
  • Anyone who lived in the Nitro area between Jan. 1, 1948, and Sept. 3, 2010 will be tested for dioxin. Although they must show proof they lived in the area, they will be eligible for testing even if they no longer live in Nitro.
  • Former or present employees of Monsanto are not eligible for any of these benefits.
  • An office will be set up to organize testing for Nitro citizens. The registration of participants is to be overlooked by Charleston attorney Thomas Flaherty, who was appointed by the court.
  • Residents have a right to file individual suits against Monsanto if medical tests show they suffered physical harm due to dioxin exposure.

Monsanto Produced Toxic Chemicals in Nitro

Just how were Nitro citizens exposed to dioxin? Monsanto was producing the toxic herbicide Agent Orange in Nitro, and dioxin is a chemical byproduct of the substance. It is known to cause serious health conditions. The factory which produced Agent Orange was opened in Nitro in 1948 and remained in operation until 2004, even though usage of this herbicide in the past (in Vietnam and other Asian countries) was fatal to millions of citizens and the war veterans who were exposed to it.

“There is no doubt that during and after the war, many Vietnamese absorbed this very toxic material [dioxin]. It is our belief from toxicological research and epidemiologicalstudies from many countries that this dioxin probably resulted in significant health effects in Vietnam.” – Arnold Schecter and John Constable

“It’s been a real long haul,” attorney Stuart Calwell told The Charleston Gazette. Calwell represented Nitro area residents in a class action suit that prompted Monsanto to make the settlement.

“The politics of dioxin has been bitterly debated since the Vietnam War, but … we know that there is a health issue there and hopefully people will get their houses cleaned and the risk will come to an end and those exposed in the past will have the benefit of keeping an eye on their health.”

The people of Nitro still need to fill out a register to receive the benefits outlined in the settlement. Due to the pivotal nature of this landmark settlement, Nitro citizens need to participate as fully as possible to set a precedent for other class action suits that farmers and consumers of GMO foods around the world might wage against Monsanto in the future to finally take them down. If enough of us do it at once, then even their bloated coffers will finally be depleted, and we can enjoy a world without being poisoned to death.

While this case did not involve glyphosate, another deadly toxin used in Monsanto herbicides such as RoundUp, its time will come soon.

From around the web:

  • dano2112a

    So, which Monsanto bigwig is going to jail over this?

  • Ineke

    Good start!.

  • ps2os2

    Sigh… with Monsanto’s lawyers it will be appealed endlessly and you will never see good results.

  • Dee Nicholson

    Well now… if, according to the US Supreme Court, corporations are persons under the law, then how about that ‘person’ spend a significant time in jail as the perp it is? That, of course, would mean a total shut-down of all Monsanto operations within the USA during the imposed sentence…. and no parole, either!

    I say, if these bastards want the RIGHTS of human beings, they’d better take the RESPONSIBILITIES as well.

    I am forwarding this lovely bit of news to Trish Jordan, PR Director for Monsanto Canada. If any of you have comments you wish to make to her, her email is and it is published online by her, so feel free. I do so love making her work for the generous salary I am sure she makes, trying to make lies into truth and truth into lies, to serve the profit of the “person” she works for…

  • muggins5

    Monsanto is not a person. It is a group of persons with a common goal who conspire together. Why cannot conspirators be tried for their crimes of our poisoning?

    • linda

      Yes, there must be an avenue to prosecute under the racketeering laws.

  • FederalReserve Brown

    dioxin poisoning needs to carry the death penalty. if understood, it would.

  • April

    We can all make a difference………STOP BUYING ANYTHING THAT IS NOT LABELED NON GMO!

  • Sabbie

    America will continue its downhill slide as long as individuals who harm others can hide behind the corporate veil, because these settlements are “just another cost of doing business”.

  • Jess Cost

    Corporations are people!!! Put their asses in JAIL.

    • linda

      Impecable logic. I got a good, sardonic laugh, too.


    It will take a super natural enactment to end these things written of so long ago Many are approaching in a multitude of disguises.Knowlege is the real power Stay alert and vigilant Brotherhood uniting in actions against these ungodly creations with unending prayers to our One God and Savior Jesus Christ Amen

  • KimWilde

    I notice that the “People” aren’t getting a dime from the lawsuit? Oh, you get to be monitored ! So what ? You can sue Monsatan on your own, by the time that would play out they will be dead. The only ones who win here for cash—– the Attys!

  • Luther R. Norman

    it took some time, but could they finally be on the right track? Why are the corporate reps getting no jail time in addition?

    • linda

      Good point. Culpability laws that passed in the mid 80s do provide prosecution for high execs.

  • Ann

    93 Million for Mansanto is just a drop in the bucket.
    The Government should be looking into exterminating them altogether!
    Governmnets around the world are turning a blind eye to a Corporation that is poisoning people every day with Roundup, Genetic Modification and all Monsanto’s other poisons.
    They should have been fined to the point of Bankruptcy!

    • greg

      Monsanto and the like are the government and visa versa.

  • RapidRay01 .

    Knowing how the Court System works in the U. S. , the victims will probably get
    ” Coupons” to buy GMO products at a discount with their local stores !

  • Andi Feinberg

    What – NO JAIL TIME?… If any one of us (We, the People) did this – we’d be so locked away for Life! – Paying Money IS NOT ENOUGH!! Good luck to Monsanto if they have to ‘defend’ their actions in every state. – Disgraceful that they get a “fine” — for POISONING PEOPLE!! WTF!!! I am thrilled to see this article – and understand this is only a “start” – Vermont, W. Virginia…We ALL need to step up — Will they sue every state that doesn’t play their way?….I hope people sign as many petitions as possible and support organizations like yours- who bring the Truth & Uupdates. WE – THE PEOPLE- ARE a Majority — Time to make some noise!! Thanks for this update!

  • hisrascal

    It gives me back some respect for our legal system!

    • Jess Cost

      I noticed that too. But I can say this, Monsanto poured PCB’s into a town that I used to live in…they got sued….the class action suit won. They dispersed the money in an attempt to provide monies for medical care. AND the only ones that benefited from that money were the crack houses.

  • Alan D Smith

    This story is like a breath of fresh air from within Our totally toxic environment. Maybe there is hope for Humanity.

    • jazzfeed

      “Maybe there is hope for humanity.”
      There’s certainly no hope in watching passively or acquiescing. Generally speaking, is defense the only hope against offense? Ultimately not, because the offenses keep coming, more frequently with more different plants, on larger scales, with more and more untested chemicals and untested combinations of these chemicals. Therefore, and again generally speaking, the only realistic hope against offense is real counter-offense, the only hope against attack real counter-attack. That takes conviction, leadership and organization. Keep the dialogue going!

      • Alan D Smith

        Well, isn’t your cup half empty? Yes, the fake-Jewish NaZionist banksters are waging an eternal, secret War On Humanity with every conceivable covert weapon to divide, conquer and destroy Us. And, Our vast majority doesn’t even know We’re at war. So, we mount no defense. But, that’s no reason to discredit any advances for Our side, now is it?

    • Burl Hosier

      93 million to Monsanto is NOTHING.. and that is passed on to the gmos eaters anyway.. so what fine are they paying.? not any the consumers of GMOS are footing that bill…. and were r u finding this FRESH air u speak off?, that poisoned too…

      • Alan D Smith

        Didn’t I say, “like (as if) a breath of fresh air” and “…our totally toxic environment.” Geesch! Put words in my mouth. You should learn how to read.