Convicted sex offender suing Big Tobacco for $50M, report says

A 64-year-old registered sex offender in Philadelphia has reportedly filed a $50 million lawsuit against tobacco conglomerate R.J. Reynolds, as well as other cigarette makers and executives, claiming they are responsible for his health problems.

Ted McCracken claims he was recently diagnosed with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma and emphysema -- conditions that all can be caused by cigarette smoking.

McCracken says he started smoking at age 15, and developed a one- to two-packs-per-day habit, Philadelphia Magazine reported.

The magazine says McCracken’s legal filing recounts the long legal history involving Big Tobacco, including the 1998 Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement, in which the Big Tobacco firms agreed to pay out $206 billion to cover states’ future health costs related to smoking and to educate the public.

The magazine also notes that McCracken is a convicted rapist, listed on the Megan’s Law registry as a Tier 3 sex offender.

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