Two American firms are suing the People’s Republic of China (PRC) over the country’s handling of the COVID-19 outbreak. In this latest lawsuit, members of Berman Law Group and Lucas | Compton allege the PRC knowingly withheld vital information on the coronavirus well before it reached pandemic status.
Spokespeople for both firms hope their class-action lawsuit will hold the PRC accountable for the devastation wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic. Although they did not set a price, lawyers say they would like to see the PRC pay “trillions” to those affected by the outbreak.
Interestingly, this isn’t the first lawsuit that has been filed against the PRC for the coronavirus outbreak. The right-wing group Freedom Watch also put together a lawsuit seeking trillions in damages from the Chinese Government. Unlike this new lawsuit, however, Freedom Watch claimed the Chinese purposefully created COVID-19 and intended to use it as a weapon.
The more recent suit, which was put together in Florida, doesn’t accuse the PRC of intentionally creating the coronavirus. Instead, lawyers at Berman Law Group say the PRC failed to accurately report on the severity of COVID-19 when it first emerged in Wuhan.
Some law professors don’t expect this new lawsuit to meet the stringent requirements set by the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act. Still, Berman Law Group is optimistic its case will force the Chinese to release documents revealing how much they knew about the coronavirus before it became a global pandemic.
The US District Court of the Southern District of Florida will hear Berman Law Group’s suit on May 1, 2020. Anyone interested in reading the full text of this lawsuit can find a copy on this website.