The Kilgores v. Monsanto et al

22CV-21-138 // CV-22-635
October 7, 2021
Final judgment
United States, Arkansas

Farmers, Landscapers
Cornelius Kilgore, Labommie Kilgore
Monsanto, Walmart
Lance Lee, James Onder, Mark Berns, W. Wylie Blair, Bart Rankin, Jay Utley, Joanna Raines McKinney, Joshua Richardson, McAlan Duncan, Matthew Stubbs.

Civil court
Herbicide, Glyphosate, Roundup
Judgement in favor of plaintiffs in an amount in excess of $ 75.000 for special and punitive damages.
Supreme Court of Arkansas, United States
No description

June 8, 2023
Supreme Court of Arkansas denies petition for certiorari or mandamus, concluding that neither is an available tool to supervise an Arkansas’ trial court’s decision to authorize the deposition of a foreign chief executive officer of a large company
No description
No description

On June 8, 2023, the Arkansas Supreme Court rejected Monsanto's request to overturn the decision of the Drew County Circuit Court of October 3, 2022, which had authorized the plaintiffs' notice of deposition of Werner Baumann, German citizen and CEO of Bayer.

This decision follows a complaint filed in October 2021 by Cornelius and Labommie Kilgore, two American citizens. Following prolonged exposure to Roundup, a glyphosate-based herbicide produced and marketed in the United States by Monsanto, Cornelius Kilgore developed non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL). The plaintiffs claim that the glyphosate present in Roundup is the cause of this pathology, and that Monsanto was fully aware of the risks of glyphosate, but had deliberately concealed these risks from consumers by failing to warn them.

On April 27, 2022, the Kilgores served Monsanto with a Notice of Deposition pursuant to Arkansas Rules of Civil Procedure 26 and 30 for the purpose of questioning Werner Baumann, then CEO of Bayer, which acquired Monsanto in 2018. The questions put to Werner Baumann were to cover:
"Monsanto's position on the safety of Roundup® products and their active ingredients, the design of Roundup® products, Monsanto's plan to redesign Roundup® products, Monsanto's plan to relabel Roundup® products, Monsanto's view of the economic value of Roundup® products, and Monsanto's plan to resolve litigation arising from Roundup® products."

On May 17, 2022, Monsanto filed a motion to annul the notice of deposition on the grounds that Werner Baumann, a German citizen, had not been duly subpoenaed in accordance with the requirements of the Hague Convention of March 18, 1970 on the Taking of Evidence Abroad in Civil or Commercial Matters. After this request had been rejected twice, the Arkansas Supreme Court finally upheld the validity of the deposition notice.