The NFL’s concussion lawsuit may be settled, but many other professional sports organizations have yet to see their day in court. Lawsuits are being brought by athletes from all kinds of sports including soccer, hockey, and basketball.
As of today, you can add professional wrestling to that list, as dozens of former wrestlers have filed a class action lawsuit against the WWE. The list of wrestlers includes minor stars from the past several decades, including Jimmy “Superfly” Snuka and Joseph “Road Warrior Animal” Laurinaitis.
The suit claims the wrestlers suffered “long term neurological injuries” throughout the course of their careers at the company, which “routinely failed to care” for the injuries “in any medically competent or meaningful manner.” The wrestlers go on to say the WWE “fraudulently misrepresented and concealed” the nature of those injuries.
“Instead of upholding its duty to its employees, WWE placed corporate gain over its wrestlers’ health, safety, and financial security, choosing to leave the Plaintiffs severely injured and with no recourse to treat their damaged minds and bodies,” stated the lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Connecticut, where the WWE is located.
Snuka, 73, is perhaps the most well-known wrestler in the suit. He was recently n headlines as a judge ruled him mentally incompetent to stand trial for murder and manslaughter charges involving the death of a former girlfriend. The defense attorneys and expert witnesses in that case said Snuka suffered from severe dementia related to getting his “bell rung a few times” during his time as a wrestler.
“The WWE knows that its wrestlers including the plaintiffs are at great risk for these diseases such as CTE that can result in suicide, drug abuse and violent behavior that pose a danger to not only the athletes themselves but their families and community, yet the WWE does nothing to warn, educate or provide treatment to them,” the wrestlers said in the suit.
The WWE has responded to the lawsuit with a statement which reads:
“This is another ridiculous attempt by the same attorney who has previously filed class action lawsuits against WWE, both of which have been dismissed. A federal judge has already found that this lawyer made patently false allegations about WWE, and this is more of the same. We’re confident this lawsuit will suffer the same fate as his prior attempts and be dismissed.”