April 16, 2014 – Earlier this month, a panel of federal judges denied a motion by the makers of OxyElite Pro and Jack3d to transfer and consolidate a number of products liability lawsuits to federal court in Philadelphia. The complaints consist of both individual personal injury claims and false advertising class actions that were originally filed in various courthouses around the country. The litigation contends that OxyElite Pro and Jack3d contained altered ingredients that were unsafe and unapproved by the FDA, leading to a nationwide hepatitis outbreak.
Free Confidential Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one has developed liver damage, liver failure, or hepatitis after taking OxyElite Pro or Jack3d, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a suit against the manufacturers of the supplement and we can help.
What’s the Problem?
On April 2, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) denied a motion by Dallas-based USPlabs to consolidate the OxyElite Pro and Jack3d lawsuits, which at the time consisted of 9 federal complaints pending in Pennsylvania, Florida, California, Texas and Hawaii. USPlabs sought to form the claims into a multidistrict litigation (MDL), and transfer the cases to the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. GNC Holdings Inc., which is USPLabs’ retail partner, is located in Pittsburgh.
Defendants Support Consolidation
According to court documents, 10 of the codefendants and 1 plaintiff supported the MDL, while the plaintiffs in 6 other actions and 4 potential tag-along actions opposed consolidating 9 actions, but supported some combination of separate consolidated litigation. However, the plaintiffs in 2 other lawsuits and defendant Natural Alternatives International opposed any form of centralization.
The defendants argued that consolidation of all of the lawsuits was warranted, regardless of the differences in the supplements’ active ingredients and the claims presented by the tort and false advertising suits, due to the fact that all of the cases allege the products are dangerous and rely on the same series of FDA actions to support their claims. Additionally, the defendants argued that discovery and pretrial motions would be likely to overlap.
OxyElite Pro Linked to Nationwide Hepatitis Outbreak
In response to the defendants’ claims, the plaintiffs argued that the dimethylamylamine (DMAA) and aegeline in the supplements are so dissimilar that they might as well be different drugs. Last year, OxyElite Pro was found to be the likely cause of a nationwide hepatitis outbreak that began in Hawaii. According to the pending lawsuits, both OxyElite Pro and Jack3d contained ingredients that were unsafe and “adulterated,” thus making them illegal to sell as dietary supplements.
Panel Denies MDL Over Differences Between DMAA & Aegeline
In January, USPlabs’ defense attorneys requested that the JPML have any potential consolidated litigation overseen by “experienced MDL jurist” Judge Eduardo C. Robreno. In its denial of this request, the judicial panel stated it was not persuaded that the MDL was necessary, either to assure the convenience of the parties involved or for the “just and efficient conduct of this litigation.”
“On the present record, it appears that the different formulations of the products will not give rise to substantially overlapping discovery, particularly in light of the differences in the health risks alleged and the distinct regulatory responses to the DMAA and aegeline products,” the JPML wrote. “Additionally, the three consumer class actions raise a unique threshold issue with respect to the alleged impact of a state court class settlement agreement reached in 2012.”
Do I have an OxyElite Pro Lawsuit?
The Product Liability & Defective Drug Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in OxyElite Pro and Jack3d Lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new liver damage, liver failure, and hepatitis cases in all 50 states.
Free Confidential Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one has developed liver damage, liver failure, or hepatitis after taking OxyElite Pro or Jack3d, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a suit and we can help.