22nd Century Prevails Again in Frivolous Crede Lawsuit

CLARENCE, N.Y.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- 22nd Century Group, Inc. (NYSE MKT:XXII), a plant biotechnology company that is a leader in tobacco harm reduction, announced today that the Company prevailed again in the most recent phase of the lawsuit filed by Crede CG III, Ltd. Crede filed the lawsuit after the Company terminated its failed China joint venture arrangement with Crede and its principal, Terren Peizer, due to non-performance and other serious breaches by Crede and its principals.

In the first round of the Crede lawsuit, the Company prevailed when the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York (the “SDNY Court”) denied Crede’s request for a preliminary injunction to require the Company to issue shares of its common stock to Crede under the now void exchange feature of the Tranche 1-A warrant previously issued to Crede. The SDNY Court held that Crede had not demonstrated a reasonable likelihood that it would prevail on its claims, and that there was likelihood that Crede violated the activity restrictions of the Tranche 1-A warrant, which should bar Crede’s claim for such shares from the Company.

Following the denial by the SDNY Court of Crede’s request for the preliminary injunction, the Company filed motions requesting the SDNY Court to sever the Crede lawsuit into two separate cases and transfer the claims relating to the now terminated China joint venture to the United States District Court for the Western District of New York (the “WDNY Court”), where 22nd Century’s headquarters office is located. At the same time, 22nd Century requested that the claims relating to the Tranche 1-A warrant remain in the SDNY Court. On January 20, 2017, the SDNY Court granted such motions by the Company to sever the Crede lawsuit into two separate cases. The SDNY Court has now transferred the above-described portion of the case to the WDNY Court. The SDNY Court has also scheduled a pre-trial conference with Crede and the Company to be held on February 21, 2017 to schedule the next steps forward in the claims relating to the Tranche 1-A warrant.

“We believe that Crede’s lawsuit is frivolous and completely without merit,” explained Henry Sicignano III, President and Chief Executive Officer of 22nd Century. “We are very pleased that we continue to prevail against Crede in this matter and we look forward to a successful resolution of the cases in favor of 22nd Century. If the cases continue, however, the Company intends to file substantial counterclaims against Crede, against Terren Peizer, personally, and against their affiliates.”

About 22nd Century Group, Inc.

22nd Century is a plant biotechnology company focused on technology which allows it to increase or decrease the level of nicotine in tobacco plants and the level of cannabinoids in cannabis plants through genetic engineering and plant breeding. The Company’s primary mission is to reduce the harm caused by smoking. 22nd Century currently owns or exclusively controls more than 200 issued patents and more than 50 pending patent applications around the world. Visit www.xxiicentury.com for more information.

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements: This press release contains forward-looking information, including all statements that are not statements of historical fact regarding the intent, belief or current expectations of 22nd Century Group, Inc., its directors or its officers with respect to the contents of this press release, including but not limited to our future revenue expectations. The words “may,” “would,” “will,” “expect,” “estimate,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “intend” and similar expressions and variations thereof are intended to identify forward-looking statements. We cannot guarantee future results, levels of activity or performance. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date that they were made. These cautionary statements should be considered with any written or oral forward-looking statements that we may issue in the future. Except as required by applicable law, including the securities laws of the United States, we do not intend to update any of the forward-looking statements to conform these statements to reflect actual results, later events or circumstances, or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events. You should carefully review and consider the various disclosures made by us in our annual report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2015, filed on February 18, 2016, including the section entitled “Risk Factors,” and our other reports filed with the U.S Securities and Exchange Commission which attempt to advise interested parties of the risks and factors that may affect our business, financial condition, results of operation and cash flows. If one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or if the underlying assumptions prove incorrect, our actual results may vary materially from those expected or projected.

Investor Relations:
IRTH Communications
Andrew Haag, 866-976-4784
xxii@irthcommunications.com

Source: 22nd Century Group, Inc.