Suit Says Insurance Company Tried to Conceal Asbestos Dangers

A recent asbestos lawsuit filed in Texas on behalf of resident Jerry Martin and his wife Barbara alleges that insurance companies like MetLife conspired to conceal the truth about the hazards of the toxic mineral.

According to an article in the Southeast Texas Record, a lawyer acting on the Martins’ behalf has filed suit against 14 defendants, including Union Carbide, MetLife, Able Supply Co., Freeman Hardware and Pump Co. and Garlock Inc.

The article notes that Mr. Martin worked with and installed asbestos products throughout the county while employed by Freeman from 1962 through 1970.

“The illnesses and disabilities of (Jerry) Martin are a direct and proximate result of the negligence of each Defendant and/or its predecessor-in-interest in that said entities manufactured, distributed, designed, sold … and put into the stream of commerce, asbestos-containing products, including asbestos-containing pipe … which Martin worked around,” the suit says.

The suit continues, claiming that Metropolitan Life was also “negligent in failing to convey and actively suppressing information regarding the dangers of asbestos.”

“The defendant, an insurer of the major asbestos manufacturers, had unique knowledge of the asbestos disease and experience of its insurers,” the suit says.

“In order to minimize its claims and maximize its profits, MetLife aided and abetted the concealment and misrepresentation of scientific studies showing that asbestos could cause cancer in animals, participated in an industry-wide fraud and decades-long deception of government authorities and the workers who used and handled the asbestos products of its insurers.”

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