My head hurts and I want $800 million

Motorola fried my brain, claims US doctor

An American doctor has taken a $800 million lawsuit out against Motorola claiming its mobile phone was the cause of his brain cancer. Chris Newman was diagnosed with a malignant tumour behind his right ear in 1998. Between 1992 and 1998 he used his mobile regularly to keep in touch with patients.

It should prove an interesting court case to watch. The mobile-cancer issue has been hotly debated for the last year with both US and UK authorities coming up with the same non-answer answer. No official body has been willing to say that mobile are definitely not harmful, relying instead on the old "no proven link" get-out and at the same time warning against persistent use.

A cynic would suggest that the multi-billion pound industry built around mobiles has had an unhealthy effect on official conclusions, and the ambiguous stance is in fact a tacit admission of the harm mobiles can cause. We won't be surprised if this is settled out of court. Mind you, with the US legal system, it's anyone's guess (also, if someone can explain how Newman is worth $800 million, we'd be interested to know - $100 million in compensatory damages and $700 million in punitive damages, apparently).

A Motorola spokesman said: "We have maintained for years that such assertions are groundless." Unsurprising really.

Recently, the Education Secretary proposed plans to ban all mobiles from schools because of the concern that younger brains and skulls are at increased risk from the radiation given out by mobiles. ®

Related stories

Finally the truth! Mobiles only kill children
WHO doctors clear mobile phones of cancer risk (there's a load of links to other mobile stories at the bottom - it'll just get ugly if we put them all here)

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