Gene Green

Contrite tobacco executives plead for settlement $368.5 billion deal in doubt as some now admit smoking's perils

WASHINGTON -- Four years after the tobacco industry famously swore that nicotine was not habit-forming, a more contrite cohort of tobacco chiefs journeyed to Capitol Hill yesterday to concede that "by some definitions" smoking is addictive and it does contribute to disease.

Lobbying for a settlement that would insulate them from future class action lawsuits, the chief executives of five tobacco companies also promised to immediately release millions of pages of secret documents they have fought for years to keep under wraps.

"I would prefer [my children] would not smoke as minors. I would prefer they not smoke as adults," Laurence Tisch, co-chief...