Current Weather
The Spy FM

Former Peanut Firm Executives Indicted Over 2009 Salmonella Outbreak

Filed by KOSU News in US News.
February 21, 2013

Four former executives from Peanut Corp. of America and a related company are facing federal criminal charges for covering up information that their peanut butter was contaminated with salmonella bacteria.

The charges are related to a nationwide outbreak of salmonella back in 2009. More than 700 people became ill, and federal investigators traced the source of the bacteria to peanut butter manufactured in Blakely, Ga., by the Peanut Corp. of America. The company is no longer in business.

The 76-count indictment was unsealed Wednesday in federal court in Georgia. The charges include conspiracy, mail and wire fraud, obstruction of justice, and others related to distributing adulterated or misbranded food.

Federal officials say executives at the company were aware that their products had tested positive for salmonella, but they failed to alert their customers, and also lied about those test results to inspectors from the Food and Drug Administration.

The executives also allegedly falsified documents that stated “that shipments of peanut products were free of pathogens when, in fact, there had been no tests on the products at all or when the laboratory results showed that a sample tested positive for salmonella,” according to a Justice Department statement.

The four people indicted include former company president Stewart Parnell, former Blakely plant operations manager Samuel Lightsey, and Mary Wilkerson, a quality assurance manager. Also indicted was Michael Parnell, who worked as a food broker on behalf of the peanut company.

The former executives could face up to 20 years in prison if convicted. Another executive, Daniel Kilgore, who served as a plant manager from 2002 through 2008, has already pleaded guilty in the case.

Dan Charles will have more on this story on All Things Considered later today, so stay tuned. [Copyright 2013 NPR]

Leave a Reply

9PM to 12AM SpyLab

SpyLab

Katie Wicks is our resident international superstar DJ. She hosts SpyLab, a dance mix show on Saturday nights and co-hosts the largest weekly dance party in OKC, Robotic Wednesdays. She has had two original dance songs chart in the World Top 100 Beatport charts. She has been hired to DJ in L.A., NYC, Chicago, San Francisco, Dallas, Portugal, Spain and Costa Rica.

Listen Live Now!

Upcoming Events in your area (Submit your event today!)

Streaming audio and podcasts

Stream KOSU on your smartphone

Phone Streaming

SmartPhone listening options on this page are intended for many iPhones, Blackberries, etc. with low-cost software applications available to listen to our full-time web streams, both News on KOSU-1 and Classical on KOSU-2.

Learn more about our complete range of streaming services

We're perfecting the patient experience - Stillwater Medical Center