On November 20, 1961 Grünenthal executives personally met with Dr. Lenz in Hamburg. Lenz later recalled how the company representatives were hardly interested in the actual facts he presented to them, but already looking for potential weaknesses in his research. He also said they threatened to sue him.
Later that day, during another meeting with Lenz and the Grünenthal representatives – this time at the Health Department of the Hamburg Ministry of the Interior – Grünenthal was asked if they were willing to take Thalidomide off the market. They refused. Instead, Grünenthal threatened to institute proceedings against the ministry for any financial damage if they were forced to withdraw their preparations.
Source: Anklageschrift (indictment) from 1967, today archived at the National Archives of North Rhine-Westphalia in Duisburg, Germany (Rheinland Division, Gerichte Rep. 139, No. 1–396), p. 410.