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Location: Houston, Texas, United States

My name is David Stone. I live in Houston, Texas. I am a 30-something single white male. I am an Orthodox Christian and am a member of an English-language parish of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia (ROCOR).

Saturday, August 20, 2005

The Silicosis Debacle

Lawsuits from persons claiming to be suffering from Silicosis are nothing new. Silicosis cases have, in fact, been around for years. Recently, however, an apparent epidemic of Silicosis struck the state of Mississippi. Oddly enough, this sudden wave of illness in Mississippi did not seem to be noticed by most doctors, hospitals or the media.

No one seemed to notice that is until a Federal District Court Judge in Texas got involved. Judge Janis Graham Jack was put in charge of overseeing over several Silicosis cases, involving thousands of claims, which were filed in multiple states. Judge Jack is a former nurse and is married to a practicing physician. She is very familiar with medical procedures and terminology. As a former nurse she would also be very familiar with standard procedures in diagnosing illnesses.

Judge Jack's review of the medical reports and testing procedures in these cases raised "great red flags of fraud." In fact she even summoned the doctors involved to testify under oath. Once on the witness stand and facing Judge Jack's direct questioning the doctors suddenly started to change their tune. Over 3,000 Silicosis diagnoses were withdrawn by one doctor alone while another physician interrupted his testimony on the Witness stand to ask for a lawyer to represent him!

All of this eventually led Judge Jack to enter a scathing 249 page Order on these cases which blasted the doctors and plaintiffs firms involved. Judge Jack ended up remanding most of the cases back to the Mississippi State Courts they were originally filed in. It is now expected that the plaintiffs will have a much tougher time proving these cases should be allowed to continued. Many of these cases will undoubtedly be dismissed. Judge Jack went further and even sanctioned the Houston Law firm of O'Quinn, Laminack & Pirtle for their role in the fiasco.

The story does not end there, however, and now investigations are beginning as to possible criminal wrongdoing. Subpoenas from Congressional committees have been issued and the Attorney General's Office in New York has begun an investigation.


Blogger Joe said...

This is a pretty interesting article. It seems to be like the asbestos back in it's day. I remember when my father was diagnosed with asbestos. I even work with the stuff back in the 70's . Thats for the info...

4:38 PM  

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