Judge Jan Wolter Wabeke officially withdrew from a lawsuit filed by a group of anti-smokers against the tobacco industry. On Monday the lawyer representing this group, Benedicte Ficq, accused the judge of being biased. Later in the day the court in The Hague granted Wabeke's request to withdraw, NOS reports.
Ficq told the media that he learned through an acquaintance that Wabeke had been "condescending" about this case while speaking in private, saying that smoking is the smoker's own responsibility. Ficq asked him to withdraw.