A judge in New York tossed 3M Co.’s (NYSE:MMM) lawsuit accusing Porton Group and its CEO Harvey Boulter of a campaign of “blackmail” and “extortion” to get a $30 million payment, the latest round in a complicated case originating with 3M’s purchase of the BacLite test from Porton in 2007.
Earlier this month a court in Washington, D.C., threw out a similar case, according to a Porton press release.
"I am delighted we have once again been unequivocally cleared of any misconduct," Boulter said in prepared remarks. "The decisions of the two judges in the U.S. demonstrate that the claims of 3M had absolutely no merit. I am pleased that the case has been closed on this sham of a dispute."
Last November, 3M also lost a $1.3 million judgment in a British court which found that the conglomerate pulled the BacLite test, used to detect methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, for commercial reasons rather than for 3M’s claim that it pulled the test over fears that it wouldn’t pass regulatory muster.
3M counter-sued in June 2011. Porton had reported 95 percent success with the test, but it proved only 50 percent effective in 3M’s trials.
The attorneys for the Porton Group alleged in May 2011 that 3M botched the trial by keeping the bacteria below body temperature. They added that the reason 3M sabotaged the trial was because it was developing a more expensive molecular test to detect MRSA internally and wanted it to be the first to reach the market.