The children of the late Mary Johnson have brought a wrongful death suit against Total Petrochemicals & Refining USA, alleging the company exposed her to benzene.

James, Robert and Richard Johnson filed the suit Nov. 9 in Jefferson County District Court.

According to the lawsuit, Mary Johnson was employed at Fina’s Port Arthur refinery, where she was exposed to benzene containing products.

“As a result of such exposure, Mary Johnson developed leukemia Polycythemia Vera … from which she died a painful and terrible death on October 24, 2011,” the suit states.

The suit alleges the defendant knew for decades that benzene could cause disease but still allowed employees to use toxic chemicals in the workplace.

The plaintiffs further contend the defendant acted with malice, entitling them to exemplary damages.

Provost Umphrey attorney D’Juana Parks of Beaumont represents the plaintiffs.

Judge Gary Sanderson, 6oth District Court, is assigned to the case.

Case No. B193-580

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