Richard Arsenault Chairs Panel at 70th Annual LSBA Meeting


Annual LSBA Meeting

Neblett, Beard & Arsenault’s senior and founding partner, Richard J. Arsenault, will chair a discussion panel at the 70th Annual Louisiana State Bar Association meeting in Las Vegas, Nevada today.

Mr. Arsenault will lead the Insurance, Tort, Workers’ Compensation and Admiralty Law Section’s “What’s Been Happening During the Year – While You’ve Been Practicing Law” seminar. He will be joined by three federal judges. They will discuss recent jurisprudential developments, and how they’ve impacted the practice of law.

Arsenault is an active and respected member of the Louisiana State Bar Association. He is frequently asked to organize and address state-wide legal conferences for the association, including annual Admiralty Symposiums, Mass Tort Symposiums and special topic seminars, like the 2010 LSBA Gulf Coast Oil Spill Symposium. Additionally, Arsenault convenes a discussion panel composed of respected legal figures and federal judges each year at the LSBA Annual Convention in Destin, FL.

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Settlement of Genetically Modified Rice Lawsuits with Bayer Cropscience


Modified Rice Lawsuits

Bayer CropScience has agreed to a $750 million dollar global settlement with rice farmers over contamination by Bayer’s experimental “Liberty Link” genetically modified rice. The controversial GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) was discovered in the commercial rice supply, causing a plunge in exports to Europe and slamming the rice industry.

Under the terms of the global settlement, Bayer has agreed, subject to certain terms and conditions, to settle pending claims for payments not to exceed $750 million. Prior to this agreement, Bayer had lost several jury trials and settled an additional three cases before they reached a jury.

“This settlement is validation for American rice farmers,” said, chair of the court-appointed executive committee for the plaintiff farmers. “It was a long, hard fought battle, but certainly worth the effort, and we’re pleased with the result.” He represents many of the rice farmers involved in the litigation.

The settlement will be open to long-grain rice farmers in the United States, affecting well over 8,000 farming operations. A Claims Administrator has developed computer programs to administer the settlement process.

“We wanted to ensure that the farmers received fair compensation for their losses” explained Arsenault. “The farmers believed in us and we believed in them. It created a bond and momentum that sustained us throughout the many years of aggressively fought litigation.”

According to lawsuits , farmers in five states claimed Bayer negligently contaminated the commercial rice crop with genetically modified LLRICE 601 and LLRICE 604, leading to export restrictions, bans on two varieties of high-yield seed and a plunge in prices. Within days of the restriction announcements, the decline in rice futures had already cost American rice farmers many millions.

“Our perseverance paid handsome dividends for deserving farmers,” concluded Arsenault.

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Hand Sanitizers Fall Short on MRSA Claims


MRSA Claims

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) sent warning letters to four makers of hand sanitizing products that claim to prevent infection from Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), E.coli and bird flu. The companies in question are:

Staphaseptic First Aid Antiseptic/Pain Relieving Gel (Tec Laboratories)
Safe4Hours Hand Sanitizing Lotion and Safe4Hours First Aid Antiseptic Skin Protectant (JD Nelson and Associates)

Dr. Tichenor’s Antiseptic Gel (Dr. G.H. Tichenor Antiseptic Co.)

CleanWell All-Natural Foaming Hand Sanitizer, CleanWell All-Natural Hand Sanitizer, CleanWell All-Natural Hand Sanitizing Wipes, and CleanWell All-Natural Antibacterial Foaming Handsoap (Oh So Clean, Inc, doing business as CleanWell Company).

The FDA letters warned each company that their products’ marketing is in breach of federal law and gave them 15 days to correct the violations.

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