Lactalis: an investigating judge appointed in the case of contaminated milks

It was a decision much awaited by the victims. The investigation into Salmonella contamination of infant milks, for which the Lactalis group is responsible, will now be conducted by an examining magistrate.

It is now an investigating magistrate who will continue the investigation into the contamination of Salmonella infant milks for which the Lactalis group is responsible. After nine months of preliminary investigation, the public health unit of the public prosecutor's office of Paris decided to open a judicial investigation against X for "deception on the substantial qualities of the goods", "involuntary injuries resulting in incapacity for work less than or equal to three months "and" failure by a food business operator to withdraw or recall a product detrimental to health ".

Nearly 300 complaints were lodged

The Paris prosecutor's office ruled that the investigations should "continue in another legal framework" more appropriate, after analyzing thousands of documents seized during searches on four sites of Lactalis. A total of 53 infants were infected with salmonellosis in France at the end of 2017 after drinking infant milk from the Craon plant in Mayenne, which has recently resumed its activity. Nearly 300 complaints were lodged against the Lactalis group.

On 29 August, the parents of a child who had eaten Salmonella-contaminated infant milk also filed a complaint for "concealment of evidence". This follows the theft of three computers and a tablet during a robbery of a Paris branch of the Directorate General of Competition, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF), one of the services in charge of the investigation into the health scandal affecting the dairy group.

Concealing evidence

Quentin Guillemain, who founded the association for the defense of Lactalis victims, called in February to boycott, still relevant, Lactalis products still marketed in supermarkets. On Twitter, he talks about "the breach of trust" between parents and the brand. As such and on behalf of families, he calls on "consumers to avoid buying and consuming the products of Lactalis brands currently on sale in France and abroad."
More than a hundred complaints from angry parents have been filed through him, plus the one for "concealment of evidence". "Our goal is to ensure that the evidence of this ultra-sensitive case stops disappearing.Who stole these documents? For what purposes? The factory where the milk was contaminated has resumed production, while "It should have been under seal." The day the investigations really begin, there will be nothing left, "confided recently the young father.

Salmonella infection can become very serious or life-threatening

Infection with bacteria of the genus Salmonellosis is manifested by gastroenteritis, sometimes acute, which usually resolves spontaneously within a few days. However, the consequences can be serious in certain susceptible populations, particularly people suffering from malnutrition, suffering from certain diseases (achlorhydria, hypochlorhydria or neoplastic disease), under treatment against gastric acidity, or under broad spectrum antibiotic therapy.
Finally, in infants as well as in people with weakened immune systems (autoimmune disease, immunosuppressive, immunosuppressive medical treatment, etc.), a salmonella infection can become very serious or even fatal. "We are talking about 53 infants contaminated, but this figure does not correspond to reality," said Quentin Guillemain. "We must add all those who did not react, all those who did not analyze, all those whose parents did not file a complaint because it costs money ... For me All infants who have ingested salmonella-contaminated infant milk are victims of Lactalis, so we are talking about 100 children, "he says.