Philip Morris sues for dollars 10bn

NEW YORK - Philip Morris, manufacturer of Marlboro cigarettes and the world's largest tobacco company, sued a US television network for dollars 10bn ( pounds 6.7bn) yesterday, challenging a news report that suggested it added nicotine to cigarettes to make them more addictive, writes Larry Black.

The report on an ABC TV programme contained statements that were 'false and inflammatory' and caused a dramatic decline in the value of Philip Morris shares, the group's general counsel, Murray Bring, said. The shares fell 2 per cent the day after the broadcast, which apparently had no effect on cigarette sales, he said.

The show, quoting medical sources and industry documents, suggested cigarette makers added extra nicotine to make it more difficult for smokers to quit. ABC said it stood by its claims.

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