Iowa egg manager pleads guilty to role in salmonella outbreak

The Associated Press
Thursday, 13 September 2012
By The Associated Press

Sept. 13, 2012 - A manager at the Iowa egg farms linked to the nationwide salmonella outbreak in 2010 pleaded guilty Wednesday for his role in a conspiracy to bribe a federal inspector to allow the sale of unapproved eggs.

Former DeCoster Farms manager Tony Wasmund acknowledged he conspired with at least one other person to bribe a public official in order to sell restricted eggs and misbranded food during a plea hearing in Sioux City, federal prosecutors said.

Wasmund, who is 61, and from Wilmar, Minnesota, is a former manager in the network of companies owned by Jack DeCoster, whose huge egg production operations in rural northern Iowa were blamed for the outbreak that caused the recall of 550 million eggs and sickened roughly two thousand people.

He is the first to face charges from the government's criminal investigation of the outbreak, which has involved an Iowa-based grand jury hearing testimony from former workers.

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