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Clifford Law and Hart Law Firm Obtain $5.6 Million Verdict in Mesothelioma Case Against Amoco and US Steel Following Month-Long Trial in Cook County Circuit Court

On December 14, 2021, Clifford Law Offices and the Hart Law Firm of South Carolina obtained a $5.6 million verdict on behalf of a 56-year-old man who died from mesothelioma after working as an insulating contractor on several work sites involving major American corporations. The jury deliberated 12 hours before determining two defendants to be at fault.

James C. Pullos, partner at Clifford Law Offices, along with Patrick F. Bradley, Of Counsel at the firm, and George Bellas of Bellas & Wachowski, Park Ridge, were successful against two major companies, BP Amoco and United States Steel, in a premises liability case on behalf of Fred Riebel of Chicago’s south suburbs. Also representing the plaintiff is Thomas H. Hart III of Hart Law Firm, LLC, of Summerville, South Carolina.

Today’s verdict was on behalf of the estate of Riebel who worked for 30 years at various industrial facilities in northern Illinois and northern Indiana where he was negligently and unknowingly exposed to asbestos of which defendants were aware could cause deadly mesothelioma, yet they failed to protect or warn Riebel of the fatal dangers. Riebel was diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma, an asbestos-causing cancer in 2015, and he died a painful death about 18 months later at the age of 56. He left a wife of 28 years, Eileen, and two adult children.

“The slow and painful death of Mr. Riebel is a tragic story that could have been written differently had these companies protected him from working around asbestos located at their premises,” Pullos said following the verdict. “His widow and children witnessed what will remain with them the rest of their lives.”

The month-long case was heard before the Hon. Lorna Propes of the Cook County Circuit Court at the Daley Center.

For further information, please contact Clifford Law Offices Communications Partner Pamela Sakowicz Menaker at 847-721-0909 (cell).


In re Asbestos Litigation, Case No. 15 L 2124