Since the U.S. Supreme Court denied Austin “Jack” and Peter DeCoster’s petition for writ of certiorari on May 22, time has come for the father and son to serve their jail time. They’d like to self-surrender at a prison of their choosing.
At the moment, they are back before the trial judge, Mark W.Bennett in Sioux City, IA, asking him to change where they are to be incarcerated. With their appeals of their three-month jail sentences exhausted, the men are asking the judge to change his recommendation for where they should serve their time.
When they were sentenced two years ago in connection to a 2010 Salmonella outbreak that sickened at least 2,000 people, Bennett recommended they be incarcerated at either the Federal Correctional Institution in Yankton, SD, or at a county jail near Clarion, IA, if the federal Bureau of Prisons could work that out.
The DeCosters are asking Bennett to change his recommendation to the Bureau of Prisons to suggest they serve their three months at a satellite prison camp at Berlin, NH. At the time of sentencing the family lived near Clarion, IA, but while pursuing their appeals the family has done some relocating.
“Jack DeCoster and (his wife) Pat DeCoster, his wife, have permanently relocated to Turner, ME, in part so Mr. DeCoster can be closer to his doctors and church community,” according to documents filed in the U.S. District Court for Northern Iowa. “The Satellite Prison Camp at FCI Berlin is the closest minimum security facility to his family that would allow for meaningful visitation.”
Peter DeCoster also wants to serve his time in New Hampshire.
“Jack DeCoster and Peter DeCoster jointly request this change in the designation order so that Mr. Jack DeCoster can prepare for his period of incarceration, including consulting with a cardiologist and having certain cardiac tests performed, as recommended by his primary care provider in response to recent episodes of dizziness and weakness,” says court documents.
The pair also wants to avoid county jails.
“Additionally, Jack DeCoster believes the county facilities near Clarion, Iowa (or for that matter, near Turner, Maine) would not match the security and classification needs of a first-time, non-violent inmate, and could be harmful to an 82-year-old man currently suffering from hypertension, hyperlipidemia, anemia, coronary artery disease, high blood pressure, prostate cancer and pre-diabetes,” the request states.
Jack and Peter DeCoster both pleaded guilty to Section 331 misdemeanor violations stemming from the 2010 nationwide Salmonella outbreak. As responsible corporate officials they acknowledged allowing adulterated and misbranded eggs to enter interstate commerce, and agreed to pay fines of $100,000 each.
However they appealed their jail sentences. An 8th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel went against them with a 2-to-1 vote and the Supreme Court refused to take up on the issue on appeal.
Separately their company Quality Egg LLC pleaded guilty two years ago to three violations, including felony bribery, and paid a $6.79 million fine. Their 2010 recall of 550 million shell eggs was the largest in U.S. history.
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