(Bloomberg) -- Letting TV cameras into Monsanto’s trial over the safety of Roundup herbicide might put witnesses and employees at risk, the company’s lawyer told a judge.
“Monsanto witnesses and lawyers have received threatening calls,” JoAnn Sandifer told a St. Louis judge at a hearing Thursday ahead of a trial set for this month over allegations that the weed killer causes cancer.
Sandifer cited a social media comment after Hugh Grant, the former chief executive officer and chairman of Monsanto, was announced as a witness in another Roundup trial that was scheduled for this month but has been postponed. Monsanto was acquired by Bayer AG in 2018.
“Someone wrote on Facebook, ‘He should be shot,’” Sandifer said.
Joseph Martineau, an attorney for Courtroom View Network, a broadcast streaming service, discounted any added danger from televising the trial. The subscriber-based company’s clients are almost entirely professionals, Martineau said.
The judge didn’t immediately rule on allowing the case to be televised.
Grant isn’t listed as a witness in the St. Louis case. Monsanto lost the first three cases that went to trial, all in California, and is appealing those verdicts.
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