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Top Illinois court to hear appeal by tobacco giant

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — The Illinois Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to hear Philip Morris' appeal of a $10.1 billion verdict in a class-action lawsuit claiming the tobacco giant misled smokers about the dangers of light cigarettes.

The court also kept the appeal bond the cigarette company must post at about $6 billion, rather than the $12 billion set initially. Philip Morris has argued the higher bond would drive it into bankruptcy and force it to default on a $206 billion, 25-year nationwide tobacco settlement.