Blackwell Burke P.A. Victorious in Ninth Circuit Appeal

The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed Blackwell Burke P.A.’s district court victory on behalf of international food manufacturer ConAgra Foods Inc. in Newkirk v. ConAgra Foods Inc., 727 F. Supp. 2d 1006 (E.D. Wash. 2010). The lower court decision had granted summary judgment to ConAgra and precluded the plaintiff’s expert testimony in one of the nation’s first consumer “popcorn lung” cases. This victory came eleven days after Blackwell Burke partner Corey L. Gordon argued the appeal, and almost exactly a year after the original district court win.

Blackwell Burke attorneys are experienced trial lawyers who handle complex litigation involving novel scientific claims. They are accustomed to deconstructing tough scientific issues and, particularly, debunking “junk science.” Successes like Newkirk and Khoury make Blackwell Burke attorneys sought-after advocates in cases of scientific first impression. Mr. Gordon and firm founding partner Jerry W. Blackwell also lecture on successful approaches to Daubert motions and jury trials, discovery and research, finding and working with real experts, graphics and demonstrations, persuasive arguments, effective cross examination, and how to “bring home” a defense verdict in cases involving complicated scientific issues.

The attorneys of Blackwell Burke’s Food Safety Group represent major food manufacturers as well as food distributors, retailers, and restaurants. Areas of practice include litigation, arbitration, regulatory and administrative actions, third-party discovery issues, and other legal matters. They have successfully represented institutional clients in claims involving food borne illnesses (including E. coli and salmonella), ingredients, product recalls, adulteration and contamination, packaging, product warnings and instructions, processing procedures, kill steps, and other food safety issues. The firm also has experience working with issues involving Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) matters.

For more information about Blackwell Burke P.A. or this appeal, please contact Kandy Branch at 612-343-3235.