Here’s an intriguing bit of news on the mesothelioma law front: three former executives of the massive, Trieste, Italy-based shipbuilding company Fincantieri have been convicted of “negligent homicide” in light of the fact that 37 employees died due to asbestos exposure.
According to an article posted on the Canadian news source site The Province, the three executives were jailed and given sentences ranging from three to 7 1/2 years. A sum that was either undisclosed or not specifically reported by The Province, but was nevertheless noted to be in the millions of dollars, was also part of the damages secured.
The decision against the Fincantieri executives stems from the apparent fact that the shipbuilding company continued to use asbestos in the construction of its ships until 1999. For a little perspective, Italy outlawed the use of asbestos as a construction material back in 1996. The three years of oversight was enough for the court to find the former executives guilty.
Asbestos, a fibrous material used for its valuable insulation properties, was an integral element in the shipbuilding industry for many years. Some of the many uses of asbestos in the field were the insulation of pipes, gaskets, boilers, and engines. Unfortunately, asbestos also causes devastating lung diseases, among them mesothelioma, an insidious cancer that has no known cure.
It sounds like the plaintiffs in this case got what appears to be a pretty aggressive and savvy law firm working for them. That’s good to hear. Though a successful mesothelioma settlement can’t undo the ravages that this disease causes on a victim’s lungs, it can help mitigate the medical expenses left behind for the bereaved to deal with. That can be useful, considering the massive and rapidly accruing expenses often associated with experimental treatments and quickly advancing diseases.
And, like the conviction of the former executives of Fincantieri might indicate, these settlements are also capable of achieving another purpose: justice.