BELLEVILLE – Chief Judge Andrew Gleeson plans to review the fairness of 11,256 settlements of pollution claims against Monsanto on an individual basis.
He entered a good faith order for plaintiff Willie Hudson on May 24, so Hudson can proceed to trial against metal recycler Cerro Flow.
Gleeson had entered a good faith order covering all plaintiffs in 2016, but Fifth District appellate judges vacated the order last year.
His current order noted an objection from Cerro that the court must examine good faith only with respect to all plaintiffs.
“The court disagrees,” Gleeson wrote. “Many of the issues raised by the appellate court, including issues that go the validity of contract formation, are issues that are more properly decided on an individual basis.”
“The court finds it entirely appropriate, and in fact preferable, that third party defendants approach the court seeking good faith findings as plaintiffs are identified for trial.”
He found that even if there were questions concerning the quality or quantity of disclosures made by plaintiff lawyers, those issues are moot.
He found that all three plaintiffs ratified their settlements.
Also on May 24, Gleeson assigned Circuit Judge Christopher Kolker to handle matters in preparation for Hudson’s trial.
He has set trial to start July 8.