A historic trial is taking place against massive corporation DuPont for their criminal-level misuse of a cancer-causing chemical. Most Americans, however, have no idea about the battle waging on their behalf in an Ohio courtroom.

Corporate giant DuPont is currently being pursued in litigation over whether or not their mishandling of a chemical called C-8 caused cancer as well as substantial emotional distress for one man and his family.

For those unfamiliar with C-8, here is a quick summary:

C-8 is a chemical which proved incredibly useful in creating Teflon pans. Excess of the chemicals were incorrectly disposed of, dumped into the Ohio river where it flowed downstream and eventually all over the globe.

C-8 is what scientists refer to as “biopersistent” which means that it doesn’t break down naturally as many things do. As a result, C-8 now exists in 98 percent of American bodies as well as in organisms all over the world – and it’s not going anywhere.

The case alleges that DuPont officials were intimately aware of the ill-effects of dumping C-8 and exposing humans to the chemical, but they ignored those risks.

The result, if proven, was that men like the plaintiff in this case were diagnosed with cancer due to their exposure. Studies show that C-8 can cause cancer as well as IBD and ulcerative colitis.

Lead attorney on the case, America’s Lawyer™ Mike Papantonio, addressed the court on Friday with his opening statement against DuPont, telling the jury that just like a man who knowingly poisons another, it is the jury’s job to decide whether or not DuPont should be held responsible for poisoning Ohioans.

“Now, when they say ‘poison,’ they mean poison just like everybody in this courtroom would mean poison. They mean, poison, it causes illness; poison, it causes death; poison, it should not be inhaled or ingested, that kind of poison. They mean the same kind of poison that you should carry a warning.

They mean the same kind of poison, ladies and gentlemen, that nobody would expose their family to. That’s the kind of poison they describe is this product, C-8. These aren’t my words. These are their words.”

Papantonio argues that “there was no big secret here” about whether or not executives at DuPont knew about C-8 and its dangers, showing the timeline of when executives learned of the biopersistence quality of the chemical and when they learned about the dangerous effects on the body.

Papantonio notes that the company was so intimately aware of the dangers that they made employees wear special protective clothing and told employees at the Ohio factory that they should not donate blood, worried that the contamination of C-8 in the blood could be spread.

Despite the fact that the company became intimately aware of the fact that C-8 caused cancer, and even labeled it with a cancer warning, they refused to properly dispose of it. Instead, they increased the quantities they dumped in the river many-fold as a cost-saving measure.

“They say: No, the business can’t afford it. DuPont can’t afford to do what they’re told to do. We can’t afford it. That’s their words, ladies and gentlemen, not mine: Can’t afford it. Fifteen cents. Fifteen pennies per pound.”

Papantonio told the jury that DuPont knew about the dangers of their chemical – knew, for example that it could cause the testicular cancer like that which the plaintiff suffered from,  and they had many opportunities to stop the dumping long before the man had drank a drop of tainted water from the Ohio river.

“They got a chance to pull the plug. They know they can pull the plug at any time. He hasn’t even moved into the zone of danger.”

But they didn’t.

“32 years — we’ve known for 32 years we’ve been liable. You see what’s happening as they know all this? They just keep dumping it into the Ohio River. They just keep dumping it into the air. They know all of this.”

The case is still ongoing, but if DuPont is held responsible, it could be a landmark case against the company that has put millions in acute danger for decades. DuPont appears to have been placing profit and company reputation over the health and well-being of innocent Americans everywhere, and the chickens are coming home to roost.

For detailed information, visit DuPont C8 Cancer Poisoning.

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Sydney Robinson is a political writer for the Ring of Fire Network. She has also appeared in political news videos for Ring of Fire. Sydney has a degree in English Literature from the University of West Florida, and has an active interest in politics, social justice, and environmental issues. She would love to hear from you on Twitter @SydneyMkay or via email at srobinson@ringoffireradio.com