This is how Bénédicte Ficq takes on the tobacco industry
Maybe the name Bénédicte Ficq doesn't mean anything to you, if you are part of the tobacco industry you certainly know this lawyer. In 2016, the law firm where she works took on a case in which the tobacco manufacturers are held liable for the deliberate sale of an addictive drug to (young) people, citing premeditated murder. Who is Bénédicte Ficq and why is her fight against cigarette manufacturers important?
Who is Bénédicte Ficq?
Ficq & Partners advocaten fights against the tobacco industry, she speaks on behalf of various prosecutors including a lung cancer patient, a COPD patient and pulmonologist Wanda de Kanter. Ficq graduated from the University of Groningen in 1986 and started working in Amsterdam. Over the years she has received several awards for her work as a lawyer, her case against the tobacco industry has put this lawyer in the spotlight.
Murder and manslaughter
A case about “murder and manslaughter, mistreatment and forgery.” That sounds intense, and the Public Prosecution also agreed. They had no choice but to dismiss the case because the charges would be unfounded. The constitution should be amended for this, under current regulations, manufacturers cannot be held liable. In the United States, several cases have been decided in favor of prosecutors, which have cost the tobacco industry billions. But intention is difficult to demonstrate, so far this case has not yet yielded the hoped-for verdict.
Is the tobacco industry guilty of murder?
Bénédicte Ficq posted an ad in the FD in 2018 calling on insiders to tell their story. With this she wants to encourage whistleblowers to reinforce the seriousness of the case, although the lawyer indicates that this information is not necessary as a burden of proof. Prosecutors are not concerned with financial compensation, but with the illegal activities of this industry.