SAN FRANCISCO (CN) — Pushing to defeat a class action claiming Apple failed to warn consumers about dangerous radiation from iPhones, an Apple attorney told a federal judge Thursday that bringing the case to a jury will undermine the Federal Communications Commission’s authority.
“Plaintiffs are asking for a jury to second guess the FCC,” Apple lawyer Christina Sarchio, of Dechert LLP, argued during a summary judgment hearing via telephone Thursday.
Lead plaintiff Andrew Cohen sued cellphone makers Apple and Samsung in August 2019 after the Chicago Tribune revealed an FCC-certified lab’s findings that radiofrequency radiation exposure from iPhone and Galaxy smartphones surpassed federal safety limits. Samsung was voluntarily dismissed as a defendant in the case in January.
The plaintiffs commissioned their own independent tests in 2019 and cited tests conducted by the Canadian Broadcasting Company in 2017 and French National Frequencies Agency in 2018, all of which found radiofrequency radiation exposure from iPhones exceeded federal safety limits.
In February, U.S. District Judge William Alsup denied Apple’s motion to dismiss the case, finding more evidence was needed to determine why two FCC-certified labs reached opposite conclusions when using the same guidelines to test identical iPhones.
The plaintiffs say Apple has defied Alsup’s directive by refusing to hand over a single non-public document it gave the FCC before the agency concluded that iPhones do not pose radiation-exposure risks.
On Thursday, Alsup questioned why the world’s third largest supplier of smartphones is refusing to turn over those documents.