German Company TUV Absolved of Liability in Breast Implant Scandal
Thursday’s decision by a French Appeals Court sure came as a breather for German safety standards body TUV, when the court absolved the latter of all liabilities pertaining to a faulty breast implant scandal.
This ruling by the court would require all women to pay back the damages that they had received under a 2013 decision by a lower French court. This judgment had found TUV liable and ordered it to pay millions of Euros in compensation to victims and distributors.
The fraud first surfaced in 2010 after doctors noticed unusually high rupture rates in French firm, Poly Implant Prothese’s (PIP) implants. The implants were found to contain substandard, industrial-grade silicone gel. In fact, in 2011, over 300,000 women from 65 different countries were believed to have received these faulty implants.
The news spread like wildfire and six distributors of the implants from Bulgaria, Brazil, Italy, Syria, Mexico and Romania sued TUV for a total of 28 million Euros. In addition, 1,700 other women from South America, Britain and France individually sued TUV, taking the total of liability up to 53 million Euros. Of this, TUV has already paid 5.8 million Euros.
However, the present ruling has overturned the 2013 decision, making the victims the accused now, which will have to pay the money back. The decision came after the French appeals court was satisfied with TUV’s assertion that implants made by PIP conformed to safety rules. Moreover, it bought TUV’s argument that its task was only to inspect the manufacturing process and not to check the actual implants.
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