January 28, 2014 4th Circuit published opinions

Drager as personal representative of Gross v Pilva USA, Inc. 

Gross took a generic prescription medication manufactured and marketed by Pilva. He sued under Maryland state law alleging the medication cased him to suffer motion disorders. The district court granted Pilva’s motion to dismiss on preemption grounds. The panel affirmed. It held that under United States Supreme Court precedent, state tort claims against generic drug manufacturers if the state would require the manufacturer to change the formula, the warning language in the package, exit the market or, in the alternative, accept tort liability. As Gross’ claims for negligent marketing, manufacturing, breach of implied warranties of suitability and fraud all would require one or more of these actions, all are preempted.  

United States v Bishop 

Bishop was convicted after a bench trial of violating the Arms Export Control Act based on his attempt to ship thousands of rounds of ammunition to Jordan. The panel affirmed. It held that “willful” violation of the act required proof that the defendant knows the underlying conduct is unlawful not that the exact items are on the prohibited list. The panel noted this served congressional purpose of regulating the export of ammunition and is consistent with the holdings of three other circuits which have decided the issue. Here, the proof presented was sufficient as Bishop was repeatedly trained that shipping ammunition abroad was illegal and he took steps to hide the ammunition from the shipper and thus the State Department.

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