Marfrig Group is at the center of a lawsuit which claims the Brazilian processing company paid off federal inspectors over the past six years. The lawsuit was brought forward by the Public Ministry of the Brazilian state of Mato Grosso.
The suit, presented by federal prosecutor Fabiana da Costa Silva, names Saturnino Masson, city mayor of Tangara da Serra; Edirson José Oliveira, administrative secretary; and Eunice de Fátima Cavalaria, a municipal employee, contending they gave “fraudulent payments” to inspectors.
Marfrig Group allegedly paid more than $3.5 million to federal inspectors — funneling the funds through the local government office — in order to obtain international sanitary certifications, Silva added. The Department of Inspection of Animal Products (DIPOA), under the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture, said in April 2006 that only federal inspectors could carry out plant visits.
The mayor’s office has caused much harm and losses through their illegal actions, Silva contended.
The Public Ministry seeks that Marfrig Group and the mayor’s office pay for both moral damages and civil penalties, in accordance to Brazilian law for administrative misconduct.
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