Cynthia Robinson, flanked by her attorneys, after a Florida jury awarded her $23.6bn (£13.86bn) in damages against a cigarette maker for the 1996 death of her husband from cancer.

Christopher Chestnut (right) of Georgia firm The Chestnut Firm, said: ‘The jury wanted to send a statement that tobacco [companies] cannot continue to lie … about the addictiveness of and the deadly chemicals in their cigarettes.’ RJ Reynolds, whose brands include Camel, said it will challenge the verdict, describing the award as ‘grossly excessive and impermissible under state and constitutional law’.