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WARNING: This site deals only with the corporate corruption of science, and makes no inference about the motives or activities of individuals involved.
    There are many reasons why individuals become embroiled in corporate corruption activities - from political zealotry to over-enthusiastic activism; from gullibility to greed.
    Please read the OVERVIEW carefully, and make up your own mind.




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IARC Task Force    

A task force of the global tobacco industry which was set up specifically to attack the WHO's multi-center, multi-national studies on the health effects of passive smoking. It was well-funded by all the major tobacco companies.


The International Agency for Research into Cancer (IARC), while being a World Health Organisation (WHO) agency, operated out of Lyon, France. It recruited prominent scientists from all over Europe to conduct these studies, which it then integrated into its own report. This provided the tobacco industry with many ways to influence the outcome.

This tobacco industry task force met over many years to organise infiltration of the IARC, recruitment of informers, and to design the global tobacco industry's tactical response to the World Health Organisation's International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) multi-center study into the health effects of passive smoking (ETS). The funded tame scientists to infiltrate the IARC coordination meetings, and used the compliant services both of one short-term Director-General, and a longer-term Associate Director of WHO for information in order to run a pre-emptive campaign.

The task force plans included funding and organisation of pseudo-science to counter the expected findings that ETS was harmful to the general public, and they went to extraordinary lengths to divert attention when the report was released, and to disparage and defame the scientists involved. Their PR machine, then spread the false story that the IARC findings had not shown any substantial adverse health effects.

The list of collaborators shows at least three (maybe four or more) of the scientists on the list are clearly 'friendly' and have been receiving secret payments and grants from the tobacco industry.

1984: Establishment of IARC research program and Working Group on ETS.

1986: Start of Methodologial investigations

1988: Start of Epidemiological investigations

See Timeline:

1990: The task force was led by Matt Winokur.
    Tobacco Industry Members and Allies"
Philip Morris' IARC Task Force Members

  • Steve Parrish, (Supervisor) Senior Vice President of External Affairs, General Counsel, former head of Worldwide Regulatory Affairs
  • David Greenberg, (Supervisor) Head of PM Corporate Services (PMCS) Brussels
  • Matthew N Winokur, (Initial Chair) PM Worldwide Regulatory Affairs
  • Tony Andrade Shook, Hardy & Bacon law firm
  • Tom Borelli, PM Companies
  • Ulrich Crettaz, PM EEMA Switzerland
  • Jenny Green, Covington & Burling law firm
  • E Gregg, Shook, Hardy & Bacon law firm
  • Charles Lister, Covington & Burling law firm
  • Helene Lyberopoulos, PMCS Brussels
  • Anne Okoniewski, PM International
  • G Peck, Shook, Hardy & Bacon law firm
  • Helmut Reif, Science and Technology, FTR, Neuchatel (PM Europe headquarters]
  • Mitch Ritter, Science and Technology, Neuchatel
  • Joanna Sullivan, PMCS Brussels

International ETS Management Committee:
    • Matthew N Winokur, PM
    • Chris Proctor, Sharon Boyse, BAT
    • Richard Marcotullio, RJR
    • Paul Sadler, Imperial
    • David Rowland, Rothmans
    • Christopher Walther, Remtsma (Germany)

Other industry representatives and affiliates:
  • RW 'Bill' Murray, VP and head of PM's worldwide tobacco operations
  • Robert Pages, Director, Science and Technology, PM USA
  • Jim Lindheim, Chairman, Burson-Marsteller public relations
  • Richard Carchman, Principal scientist, PM USA

Tobacco Industry's European scientific consultants:
    • RA Walk, INBIFO scientist
    • Angelo Cerioli, ISTOCONSULT, pathologist
    • John Wahren, Professor of physiology, Karolinska Institute
    • Peter Lee, UK Statistician
    • Torbjorn Malmfors, Toxicologist, coordinator for Nordic consultants
    • Klaus Riemann, Managing Director, GESOMED
    • Ragnar Rylander, Professor, University of Gothenburg, Sweden

1993: Philip Morris set up industry-wide IARC Task force to cancel, delay, pre-empt or influence the wording of the IARC report into ETS

1993 July 26: Henrick Hansen reported to Cynthia von Maerestettenn on IARC study details

"It would appear from my preliminary foray, that half the Western World (or at least the portion employed by PM) have moles engaged in efforts to track timeframe etc. Given that data is still being collected, not surprising that timeframe difficult to nail down.

    One item of note is that one of the collaborators is Kalandidi (Greece) who was a co-worker of Trichopoulos. . . . . . . NOT a good omen.

    IARC has a new Director, Paul Kieihues, a neuropathologist who was (and will remain) a professor of neuropathology and member of the medical faculty at University of Zurich. He will be dealing with a strangled budget. The agency took a 8.5% budget cut after the former Soviet Union stopped contributing funds in 1991. While contributions from the member states will increase in the next biennial, the budget is still $2 million below what it was and reserves are at zero.

    Kleinhues will be forced to set clear priorities (window of opportunity). One can expect him to maintain the agency dual approach; a strong epidemiology branch coupled with laboratory research. He can also, given his background and interest
    expected shake up the staffing in coming months and pay more attention to prevention; "we need to change people's habits" is something he has and continues to espouse frequently and as such can reasonably expected to move IARC beyond the realm of "pure scientific research".

    I do not know enough about the project or about what various bods in PM are already doing about this to both track it and/or influence but there are certainly a cast of thousands so whatever WE do needs to be very carefully coordinated with
    others and some clarity as to who the conductor of the train is.

1997 Apr 8: Burson-Marsteller's Final instructions IARC Response plan and material for Europe. It was prepared for spokepeople. The distribution list had now expanded to: British American Tobacco

  • Keith Gretton
  • Vickie Curtis
  • Chris Proctor
Imperial Tobacco
  • Paul Sadler
Philip Morris
  • David Greenberg
  • Bernard Rogan
  • Helene Lyberopoulos
  • Denise Claveloux
  • Manny Bourlas
  • Ted Sanders
  • Matt Winokur
  • Reinhard Pauling
  • Wolfram Roper
RJ Reynolds
  • Axel Gietz
  • Adam Bryan-Brown
  • Steve Sears
  • David Rowland
  • Jacqueline Smithson
  • Maud van Boven
Shook Hardy & Bacon
  • Gene Peck
  • Tony Andrade
Lovell White Durrant
  • Rosie Webb
  • Kim Davies
  • Mike Seymour
  • Katie Williams
  • Josh Reiss
  • Alan Biggar
  • Stefan Gijssels