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Jury returns $55M verdict against Honda after crash paralyzes driver; faulty seat belt alleged

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PHILADELPHIA - A jury in Philadelphia has returned a $55 million verdict against Honda Motor Co. for a rollover accident that left a driver paralyzed.

Lawyers for Carlos Martinez argued a faulty seat belt design in his Acura Integra caused the injuries he suffered in 2010.

Honda says it will appeal the verdict issued Thursday. A company spokesman denies any defect in the restraint system.

A lawyer for Martinez says the father of four was driving to work in suburban Baltimore from his home in York, Pennsylvania, when a tire blew out and he lost control of the car. Attorney Stewart Eisenberg says the seat belt failed to prevent Martinez's head from hitting the roof of the car as it rolled over.

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