updated 3/21/2011 3:42:32 PM ET 2011-03-21T19:42:32

A New Jersey man who says he suffered permanent heart damage after drinking the alcohol- and caffeine-laced Four Loko beverage is suing its manufacturer.

Tire salesman Michael Mustica of Knowlton Township filed the lawsuit last week against Phusion Projects.

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The lawsuit, first reported last week by The Press of Atlantic City, claims that during a visit to Atlantic City in October, Mustica drank 2½ cans of Four Loko and suffered heart arrhythmia.

Each can of Four Loko contains 12 percent alcohol — the equivalent of three cans of beer.

Phusion spokesman Chris Hunter declined to comment Monday to The Star-Ledger of Newark but says the company still believes mixing alcohol and caffeine is safe. Phusion agreed to remove caffeine from the drink in November after complaints from the Food and Drug Administration.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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