Former Employee of Peanut Corp. of America Subpoenaed to Testify
Lynchburg, VA - A former employee of the Lynchburg based Peanut Corporation of America says she's been subpoenaed to testify before a Federal Grand Jury in Georgia next month.
The company was at the center of the 2008 and 2009 salmonella outbreak that killed nine people and sickened roughly 700 others.
ABC 13 has agreed not to release the name of the former employee, but she tells us the FBI told her she needs to plan on staying in Macon for up to six days, not including the weekend.
While no one in the US Attorney's office there is allowed to confirm whether a grand jury is meeting, family members have been hoping for years someone will be held criminally responsible for the outbreak that led to the largest food recall in US history.
You may remember, the owner of Peanut Corporation of America pleaded the fifth in 2009 when lawmakers questioned him and tried to claim he knew his company's products were tainted.
It infuriated victims and their families who still hold Stewart Parnell responsible for covering up for his company.
"To me, he's not a stand up guy. He's somebody hiding behind the law. Let's have the law bring out the facts," said Jeff Almer, whose mother was the first person to die from the tainted peanuts.
Bill Marler, who's represented dozens of victims and their families, says he's glad federal prosecutors are moving forward.
"When you saw that over 700 people were sick and nine dead, you just went, 'When is someone gonna be charged criminally?' And it would be great to see if that did indeed happen now," Marler said by phone.
Stewart Parnell's lawyers say he has not been subpoenaed to testify and a family member at his Lynchburg home declined to comment.
The grand jury is scheduled for November 13 in Macon, Georgia.