Brimer v. Merangue International Limited

Posted: 12/14/2012  browse the case archive

On December 14, 2012, citizen enforcer Russell Brimer and settling defendant Merangue International Limited ("Merangue") entered into a Settlement Agreement, which resolved Brimer's allegations that Merangue sold erasers, pens with vinyl/PVC charm toppers, and vinyl/PVC clipboards containing the phthalate chemical di(2-ethylhexyl)phthalate ("DEHP") and/or the heavy metal lead in the State of California without providing the requisite health hazard warnings.

As part of the settlement, Merangue agreed not to sell any erasers, pens with vinyl/PVC charm toppers, or vinyl/PVC clipboards in California after December 17, 2012, unless the erasers, pens, and clipboards contain no more than 1,000 parts per million of DEHP and less than 100 parts per million of lead in any accessible component when analyzed using state or federally approved testing methodologies. Should Merangue comply with these heightened standards by December 17, 2012, and continuing into the future, Brimer agreed to waive a portion of the civil fine that would otherwise be applied.

The Settlement Agreement requires settlement payments of $37,500, divided therein between civil penalties, 75% of which are paid to California's Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment, and compensation to whistleblower Brimer and his counsel for their successful enforcement of this matter in the public interest.

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