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Compensation ruling over toxic meat

A SHANGHAI court has upheld a ruling demanding that a pork wholesaler and the market where he had his stall pay more than 490,000 yuan (US$71,695) for selling tainted pork that made hundreds of people sick.

The wholesaler, identified as Li, sold pork contaminated with clenbuterol to a butcher surnamed Fan in September 2006. Fan sold the meat to a fast-food provider in the Jinqiao area of Pudong New Area, as well as other people in the district. More than 250 people were diagnosed with food poisoning after eating the pork.

Clenbuterol is a chemical banned by the food and drug administration. It can help pigs develop more muscle and less fat.

Li was found guilty of selling the pork by Pudong New Area People's Court in 2007. He was given a one-year suspended jail sentence and fined 60,000 yuan.

Meanwhile, the Pudong court ordered Fan to pay the fast-food provider 410,000 yuan and give those poisoned a total of 77,000 yuan.

Fan filed a suit against Shanghai Farm Products Center and Li at the Pudong court demanding they pay part of the compensation.

The court ruled that Li and the farm product market were jointly responsible and ordered them to pay Fan 490,000 yuan.

Li appealed to Shanghai No. 1 Intermediate People's Court but his plea was rejected.

The court of appeals ruled that Li continued to sell the contaminated pork although he was aware of its condition.

The court also ruled the operator of the wholesale market should take part of the responsibility with Li and Fan for its negligence.


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