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Judge Grants Summary Judgment to Tobacco Companies in Graphic Labels Case [USA]

Author: Zoe Tillman, BLT: The Blog of Legal Times [USA], Published on: 1 March 2012

A federal judge...granted summary judgment…to five tobacco companies suing the U.S. Food and Drug Administration over new regulations requiring graphic labels on cigarette packages. U.S. District Judge Richard Leon wrote that the "mandatory graphic images violate the First Amendment by unconstitutionally compelling speech."…Leon wrote...that the labels in question “are neither factual nor accurate.”…Leon added that it was unfortunate that the federal government hadn’t considered other alternatives to the labels requirement “that are easily less restrictive and burdensome for plaintiffs, yet would still allow the Government to educate the public on the health risks of smoking...[refers to R.J. Reynolds Tobacco, Lorillard, Commonwealth Brands, Liggett Group, Santa Fe Natural Tobacco Company]

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Related companies: Lorillard Tobacco (part of Carolina Group) Reynolds American RJ Reynolds (part of Reynolds American)