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Lawsuits & Litigation

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Ruling on FDA’s Oversight of Animal Antibiotic Use Called a ‘Big Blow to Public Health’

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In a 2-1 decision, the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals in New York ruled Thursday that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is not required to hold hearings concerning the safety of feeding antibiotics at subtherapeutic levels. The ruling overturns two district court rulings from 2012 in a case initially filed in 2011 by the Natural… Continue Reading

Time is Short for PCA Pre-Trial Motion Since Jury Selection Begins Monday

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UPDATE:  In a ruling from the bench that came after a one hour and 13 minute hearing Friday afternoon, U.S. District Court Judge W. Louis Sands denied defendant Mary Wilkerson’s motion to have all charges agains her dismissed.   Her trial of with two other former former Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) executives will begin… Continue Reading

Three States Sue 5-Hour Energy Makers For ‘Deceptive’ Advertising

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Oregon, Washington and Vermont have filed lawsuits against the makers of the energy drink 5-Hour Energy for making “deceptive” marketing claims. More states are expected to follow. The defendants in the cases are Living Essentials, which manufactures, markets, distributes, advertises and sells 5-Hour Energy, and Innovation Ventures, which developed the formula for the drink in… Continue Reading

Publisher’s Platform: Three Years Since People Died From Cantaloupe

Primus’ 'Scorched Earth' Litigation Strategy Will Change Audit Industry, Retailer Responsibility Next

Opinion

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It has been almost three long years since dusty Holly, Colorado, became the epicenter of a Listeria monocytogenes human tragedy. Many are painfully aware that litigation has been ongoing since the fall of 2011. The litigation stems from one of the deadliest foodborne illness outbreaks in U.S. history. At least 147 people were sickened, and… Continue Reading

PCA Case: Wilkerson’s Attorney Moves for Dismissal or Separate Trials

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When he speaks in court, Albany, GA, defense attorney Thomas G. Ledford is the epitome of the Southern gentleman lawyer. His client in the Peanut Corporation of America trial is Mary Wilkerson, who was the quality assurance officer for the PCA plant in Blakely, GA, which is about one hour away from the C.B. King… Continue Reading

Wisconsin Appeals Court Upholds Dairy Farmer’s Misdemeanor Guilty Verdict

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Wisconsin dairy farmer Vernon D. Hershberger has lost his appeal of the misdemeanor guilty verdict imposed last year by a jury and Sauk County Circuit Court Judge Guy D. Reynolds. In a 25-page opinion issued Thursday, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals upheld Hershberger’s conviction for violating a Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection… Continue Reading

Judge Orders Hearing to Determine if CDC Official Can be an ‘Expert Witness’

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UPDATE- Judge W. Louis Sands has cancelled tomorrow’s previously scheduled Daubert hearing for Dr. Ian Williams.   He did so after Thomas J. Bondurant, Jr., Stewart Parnell’s lead defense attorney asked to be excused from the hearing.   In an Order, Sands continued the hearing until further notice, adding “the matter is not as urgent… Continue Reading

Stewart Parnell’s Attorneys Want to Question Government’s Experts Before Trial

Government Food Safety Experts Could Face Challenge

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Defense attorneys for former Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) president Stewart Parnell want the opportunity to challenge the expert testimony of eight potential prosecution witnesses before the delayed trial starts on July 28. Several of the U.S. government’s top food safety officials are among the witnesses being challenged. In a defense motion filed Monday, they… Continue Reading

Letter From the Editor: Oyster Farm Going Out With Class

Opinion

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Cartoonist George Russell calls California’s Kevin and Nancy Lunny “great fighters,” and there is no doubt about it. They’ve fought the warped bureaucracy of the U.S. Department of the Interior’s National Park Service to the gates of the U.S. Supreme Court. Their lease for the Drakes Bay Oyster Co. at Point Reyes has now expired,… Continue Reading

Criminal Trial of Former PCA Executives Postponed Until July 28

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The trial of the three former Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) executives that was to begin Monday is being delayed two weeks to give defense attorneys more time to review late-arriving documents from prosecutors. Jury selection is now scheduled to begin July 28 for a trial likely to take about eight weeks. U.S. District Court… Continue Reading