As many in the legal world know, Atlantic County, NJ is one of the most hostile jurisdictions in the country for defendants in mass tort litigation. Judge Carol Higbee’s 9-year tenure in Accutane litigation has been marred with questionable decisions and pro-plaintiff bias. Most of Judge Higbee’s Accutane cases which reached appellate review were reversed after great time and expense.
Hoffman-LaRoche, which manufactured the popular acne medication before litigation costs made its production impractical, had enough. They filed a motion to recuse Judge Higbee from Accutane litigation, accusing her of bias and partiality.
Her transgressions include prohibiting valuable scientific evidence from trial, to Roche’s detriment, and appearing alongside plaintiffs’ attorneys mid-trial at a DRI conference, where she made unfavorable remarks about the company.
Roche, which shed nearly 1,000 New Jersey jobs when it closed its Nutley campus last year, employs 80,000 people worldwide.
Oral arguments are scheduled to begin tomorrow at 8:30 a.m. in the Atlantic County Civil Courts building. Read more about Roche’s motion to dismiss Judge Higbee here.