For the first time among U.S. Food Processors, CEO of Peanut Corp. is convicted of knowingly selling tainted peanut butter, reportedly killing nine from a salmonella outbreak.
A former CEO of Peanut Corporation of America will face 28 years in prison for his role in a salmonella outbreak, which reportedly killed nine Americans and sickened hundreds in 2008 to 2009.
Stewart Parnell, ex-owner of Peanut Corp, appeared in a Georgia federal court with his brother and a former manager of the company. The three co-defendants were found guilty in what experts are calling the first food-poisoning trial; Parnell himself is guilty of 70 felony counts.
Associated Press reports the jurors found Parnell knowingly selling tainted peanut butter from his Georgia plant and faking lab tests, testing for salmonella. Centers for Disease Control reported the illnesses began in 2009 and sickened 714 people in 46 states.
Parnell’s attorney Ken Hodges told ABC News, “He ate the product and fed it to his children and grandchildren. We hope the judge will take into account that stewart is a good man who never intended to hurt anyone.”
Parnell’s brother will serve 20 years while the manager Mary Wilkerson is facing five years.
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