Potential jurors in Ga. salmonella trial told case may last more than 2 months

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ALBANY, Ga. – The trial of three people charged in a deadly salmonella outbreak linked to a Georgia peanut plant could keep jurors tied up at least two months.

U.S. District Court Judge W. Louis Sands told dozens called for jury selection Wednesday that prosecutors may need eight weeks to present evidence. He dismissed 10 panelists who said a prolonged trial would be a hardship. Attorneys are to pick a final jury Thursday before delivering opening statements.

Former Peanut Corporation of America owner Stewart Parnell, his brother and food broker, Michael Parnell, and the peanut plant’s quality control manager, Mary Wilkerson, are charged with shipping tainted peanuts and covering up lab results showing nuts tested positive for salmonella.

Nine people died and more than 700 were sickened in the outbreak five years ago.

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