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Food Safety News

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K. Alan Dasher

Wilkerson Wants to Remain Free During Appeal; Ordered to Report Nov. 3

Only a quick motion for release on bond pending appeal can keep Mary Wilkerson from having to report to a federal women’s prison on Nov. 3, now less than two weeks away. Her attorney filed such a motion with the Eleventh Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Atlanta on Oct. 14, and yesterday Assistant U.S…. Continue Reading

All Five PCA Defendants to Hear Outbreak Victims’ Testimony

All five defendants charged in the Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) criminal indictments will be together next week in federal court in Albany, GA, to hear victim testimony. According to newly filed court documents, attorneys for Samuel Lightsey and Daniel Kilgore, the two PCA managers who voluntarily pleaded guilty to some of the charges after… Continue Reading

Government Attorneys Call Wilkerson’s Claims ‘Vague and Baseless’

Government attorneys did not pull any punches when it came to hitting back at Mary Wilkerson and her court-appointed attorney on their latest defense motion to have her guilty verdict in the Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) criminal case dismissed. They responded on deadline with the gloves off to keep her jury conviction for obstruction of… Continue Reading

DOJ Food-Safety Enforcement Role to Continue in 2015

When producers of such staple foods as beef, eggs, and peanut butter found they were the targets of federal criminal prosecution, it became a top food-safety story of 2014. But is it likely that food-safety enforcement will continue to rely on these U.S. Department of Justice-led (DOJ) criminal cases in 2015? You can bet on… Continue Reading

Prosecutors Says Inconsistencies Among Verdicts Aren’t Grounds for Acquitting Michael Parnell

Government attorneys have asked U.S. District Court Judge W. Louis Sands to deny Michael Parnell’s motion for acquittal on the charges for which a jury found him guilty after a nearly eight-week trial. In its first response to post-trial motions made by all three defendants in the Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) case, the prosecution… Continue Reading

Defense Attorneys in PCA Criminal Case to Give Closing Arguments Today

After testimony from 45 witnesses, the often-tedious introduction of 1,000 pages of documents, and difficulty getting some evidence, the prosecuting attorney decided to end on the 32nd day of the trial where it began — with Stewart Parnell’s emails. In closing arguments to the 12-member jury, K. Alan Dasher, assistant U.S. attorney for the Middle… Continue Reading

Letter From the Editor: Week One of the PCA Trial

Opinion

After setting the scene last week for the criminal trial of three former executives of the now-defunct Peanut Corporation of America (PCA), I am beginning a series of weekly comments as the event goes forward. These are not meant to be hard opinion pieces, just some analysis and commentary offered as the products of close… Continue Reading

PCA Jury Hears About ‘Just Ship It’ Emails During Government’s Opening Statement

The long-awaited Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) trial got underway with opening statements Friday morning in Albany, GA, and it was not long before the jury learned about Stewart Parnell’s three most infamous words: “Just ship it.” That was allegedly his reply when employees wanted to know what to do when laboratory tests came back… Continue Reading