WSJ Welcomes Peter Angelos’ Plea on Asbestos Claims
Peter Angelos’ bid to consolidate decades-old asbestos cases into a single suit, submitting over 13,000 claims to far greater scrutiny, has been welcomed by The Wall Street Journal.
In a leader, the business daily said the attorney’s plea provides Judge John M. Glynn of the Baltimore City Circuit Court an unexpected opportunity to gain disclosure and eliminate bogus claims.
The discovery that more than 1,500 claimants were duplicates and nearly 70% of the remaining 11,383 plaintiffs were diagnosed by one or more of the same five doctors “all but obliges Judge Glynn to…dig into the claims and see how many are bogus suits manufactured with the help of friendly doctors,” the Journal said.
“As silicosis proved, such discovery is the best way for the judiciary to stop the avalanche of fraudulent claims so legitimate victims can get their day in court” it added, referring to a 2005 ruling that “blew the lid off the silicosis scam and shut down that fraudulent tort industry.”
The Journal pointed that one of the physicians, William Goldiner, diagnosed nearly 50% of Angelos’ plaintiffs, 77 in one day.
“When not outputting claims for the tort bar, Dr. Goldiner works as a team doctor for the Baltimore Orioles, which are owned by Peter Angelos. Another doctor, Joseph Kligman, is a former partner of Dr. Goldiner. The other three doctors either prepared reports at Dr. Goldiner's request or relied on his exams,” it said.
The Angelos revelation also adds urgency to a U.S. House of Representatives bill that would require asbestos trusts to make public their detailed claims data, the leader said.
“The asbestos litigation scam has dragged on because it has been allowed to operate in the shadows. The Baltimore court and Congress have a rare chance to shine a light,” it concluded.
Read The Wall Street Journal leader here.
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