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The BBC's Valerie Jones reports
"Anxieties about mobile phone health risks have been increasing"
 real 56k

Saturday, 5 August, 2000, 18:59 GMT 19:59 UK
Cancer victim sues Motorola

A neurologist in the United States is suing Motorola, the world's second largest mobile phone manufacturer, because he says that using a cell phone caused a malignant brain tumour.

Dr Christopher Newman, 41, has filed an $800m (540m) lawsuit against Motorola and eight other telecommunications organisations.

The nine accused
Motorola
Verizon Communications
Bell Atlantic
Bell Atlantic Mobile
Southwestern Bell Mobile
Washington/Baltimore Cellular
SBC Communications
Cellular Telecommunication Industry Association
Telecommunication Industry Association

The lawsuit, filed in Baltimore, accuses the companies of failing to tell users that cell phones produce high levels of radio frequency radiation, which can cause cancer and other adverse health effects.

The malignant tumour was discovered in March 1998 behind Dr Newman's right ear.

His lawyer said that he used mobile phones at least several times a day between 1992 and 1998 for his work.

"If I had a choice, I would never use a cellphone, because even with the potential risks, it's just not worth it," said Dr Newman.

Link denied

A spokesman for Motorola said there had been a number of lawsuits asserting a connection between mobile phone use and health problems, but that a link had never been proven.

Mobile phone
More than 90 million Americans use mobile phones
But Dr Newman's lawyer believes that medical evidence about the location and nature of Dr Newman's tumour gives him a stronger case than in earlier actions against mobile phone companies.

More than 90 million American now have cell phones, and most of them began using the phones in the past five years.

Last month a trade organisation introduced a policy requiring cell phone makers to disclose information on radiation levels produced by their phones.

The US Food and Drug Administration is to undertake new studies into possible side-effects of cell phones, with funding from the mobile communications industry.

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See also:

04 Apr 00 | Health
Phone radiation claims challenged
26 May 99 | Health
Mobile users fear health problems
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