This is not a good year for Johnson & Johnson.

Johnson & Johnson lost a $257.7 million jury verdict in Louisiana for making misleading claims about the safety of the company’s Risperdal antipsychotic drug.

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The jury found 35,542 violations of the state’s Medical Assistance Programs Integrity Law and imposed a penalty of $7,250 for each. The total $257.7 million verdict is the fifth- largest in the U.S. so far in 2010, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Source: J&J Must Pay Louisiana $257.7 Million Over Risperdal Marketing Practices – Bloomberg

Is $7,250 per violation a lot of money?  Maybe.  But keep in mind that another jury assessed over $9,000 per violation for each MP3 song a consumer illegally downloaded. 

It seems to me that ripping off the government should carry a higher penalty than downloading a song.  Especially since taxpayers don’t get billed for every song you download.