CSX Concludes Racketeering and Fraud Litigation Against Asbestos Lawyers

CSX Transportation has resolved the final stages of its racketeering and fraud lawsuit against asbestos attorneys Robert N. Peirce Jr. and Louis A. Raimond, and radiologist Dr. Ray Harron.

As part of the settlement, the West Virginia jury’s verdict stands and CSX will be paid $7.3 million to satisfy the trial court judgment entered against the lawyers and doctor on Sept. 25, 2013, and in resolution of disputed motions for attorney fees and costs.

CSX brought civil RICO and fraud claims against the defendants on July 5, 2007, alleging that they conspired to manufacture and litigate fraudulent asbestos claims against the company. In December 2012, a jury agreed and awarded CSX approximately $429,000 in damages – an amount later tripled to $1.3 million by the trial court judge as required by the federal racketeering statute. Those damages and legal fees totaled $7.3 million.

Prior to this settlement, the judgment had been on appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in Richmond, Va. That appeal is to be dismissed, leaving the jury’s findings and resulting judgment undisturbed.

“We sincerely thank the jury and the judges. They acknowledged that fraud in injury claims degrades the U.S. system and makes it harder for truly injured persons to be treated fairly,” Ellen M. Fitzsimmons, executive vice president, law and public affairs, CSX, said in a news release. “These funds will be donated to the CSX Foundation, where they will be dedicated to philanthropic efforts serving CSX‘s communities.”