Jurors in a civil case surrounding the deaths of 21 polo ponies allegedly poisoned by a compounded supplement awarded over $2.5 million to the ponies' owners and insurers last week. The owners and insurance company claimed Franck's Lab, pharmacist Anthony Campbell, and veterinarian Dr. James Belden were to blame for the loss of the horses, which consumed a supplement that contained 100 times the selenium it was supposed to have ahead of the U.S. Open polo championship in 2009.
Attorneys for Franck's Lab, which is no longer in operation, argued that Belden bore some responsibility. Legal council for Campbell tried to establish that it was up to other employees to verify the prescription.
The jury attributed 85 percent responsibility to Franck's Lab, via two of its employees, and 15 percent responsibility to Campbell. Belden, who prescribed and administered the compound, was cleared of wrongdoing.
Plaintiffs had sought $4 million in damages. Just under $1.1 million was awarded to Diamond State Insurance for its payout on the horses, while Quorum Management (one of the horses' owners) was awarded $290,000, and three individual owners were awarded a total of $1.13 million.
Read more at Courtroom Connect
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