(Reuters) – Johnson & Johnson said on Wednesday it has received applications from the US Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) for litigation involving alleged asbestos pollution in its signature Baby Powder product line.
The company said it intends to "fully cooperate with these inquiries, and will continue to defend the company in speech issues."
The information in Johnson & Johnson's annual report on Wednesday is the first time the company revealed that it had received summons
The Ministry of Justice and the SEC did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
A Reuters report on December 14 revealed that Johnson and Johnson knew for decades that small amounts of asbestos, a known carcinogen, were in some cases found in talc and powder products, according to the 1970s to early 2000s. number – information that it did not disclose to regulators or the public.
The Reuters article asked for the sale of shares in Johnson & Johnson, and delete about $ 40 billion from the company's market value in one day, and a PR crisis that widespread the health policy's issue Questions about the potential health effects of one of the most iconic products .
Johnson and Johnson said the federal inquiries "are related to news reports that contained inaccurate statements and also withheld important information" that had already been published.  The company added that "decades of independent testing by regulators and the world's leading laboratories show that Johnson and Johnson's baby powder is safe and asbestos-free, and does not cause cancer."
Johnson and Johnson face litigation involving 13,000 plaintiffs who claims the use of their talc products, including Baby Powder, caused cancer.
Last month, US Democrat Senator Patty Murray sent a letter to J & J CEO Alex Gorsky seeking documents and information related to testing his speech products for the presence of carcinogens and "how it presented this information to regulators and consumers."