Subsidiaries of Japan Tobacco Inc., British American Tobacco PLC and Philip Morris International Inc. were ordered to pay damages of more than 17 billion Canadian dollars ($12.8 billion) after losing an appeal of class-action lawsuits filed by smokers in Quebec.

The Quebec Court of Appeal upheld a lower court decision with minor changes, according to a ruling released Friday.

The smokers sought damages for addiction and smoking-related diseases, arguing they were never warned of the risks of smoking.