NEW YORK, Dec 16 (Reuters) -The first federal trial against Merck & Co and its withdrawn painkiller Vioxx, which ended in a mistrial earlier this week, will be retried on February 6 in New Orleans, representatives of both sides said on Friday.

U.S. District Judge Eldon Fallon set the date and venue in a meeting with the two sides.

The trial, held in Houston because of hurricane damage to New Orleans where Fallon is based, was declared a mistrial on Monday after the jury was unable to reach a unanimous verdict.

It was later disclosed that one member of the nine-member jury believed that Merck was responsible for the 2001 fatal heart attack of a Florida man who had only taken Vioxx for less than a month. The other eight had sided with Merck.

"The family is not in any way going to back down," said Jere Beasley, a partner at the law firm representing the family of Richard Irvin.

Merck had said it hoped for a February retrial of the federal case. Two state trials have resulted in one win for the company, and one for the plaintiff.

"We are more than happy to retry that case, and when the gavel goes down to start that trial we will be ready to go," Kent Jarrell, a spokesman for Merck’s defense team, told Reuters.

Merck pulled Vioxx from the market in September 2004 after a study showed the arthritis medicine doubled the risk of heart attack and stroke in people who used the drug for at least 18 months.

The New Jersey-based drug maker has since been hit with more than 7,000 lawsuits from people who claim to have been harmed Vioxx.

Merck had vowed to defend itself in each case.



We're here to help!

We live by our creed of "helping those who need it most" and have helped thousands of clients get the justice they desperately needed and deserved. If you feel you have a case or just have questions please contact us for a free consultation. There is no risk and no fees unless we win for you.

Fields marked    may be required for submission.
  1. I'm an attorney

Merck to pay $830 million to settle investors’ Vioxx...

Merck announced Friday it will pay $830 million to settle investor complaints accusing it of committing...

Merck to pay nearly $1 billion for illegal marketing...

American pharmaceutical company Merck, Sharp & Dohme has agreed to pay $950 million to resolve criminal...

Merck paying more than 3,100 vioxx death claims

Merck & Co. is paying claims by the families of more than 3,100 users of its Vioxx painkiller who...

Settlement limits insurers' claims in Vioxx deal

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) -- Former Vioxx users getting part of a $4.85 billion settlement ending most personal...

Persistence pays in Vioxx litigation

Plaintiffs get close to $5B, but Merck could have done a lot worse. Attorneys who spent nearly one year...

Merck will fund Vioxx settlement in August

Pharmaceutical company Merck says it will start cutting checks next month for former users of its...

Wonderful to work with

Beasley Allen did a great job with my case. They were wonderful to work with. They were available by phone when I needed them, treated me with the utmost respect and worked hard on my behalf. If a need arises in the future, I would definitely call on them again.

—Geraldine