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Lawmaker Wants Peanut Plant Owner Prosecuted

U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar is calling for criminal prosecution of peanut-processing plant owner at the center of the national salmonella outbreak.

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) -- U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar is calling for the criminal prosecution of the owner of the peanut-processing company at the center of the national salmonella outbreak that's sickened more than 600 people and been linked to nine deaths.

The Minnesota Democrat -- and former Hennepin County Attorney -- said she came to her conclusion after a review of the evidence against Virginia-based Peanut Corp. of America.

Klobuchar spoke Monday after hosting a two-hour panel discussion of food safety at the University of Minnesota's St. Paul campus. She spoke while flanked by the sons of two Minnesotans who died after eating the tainted peanut butter.

She also said that federal laws should be changed to prevent future outbreaks of the disease.

Peanut Corp. of America, which has filed for liquidation in bankruptcy court, is being investigated for allegedly shipping adulterated peanut products from its now-closed Blakely, Ga., processing plant. Last week, the company's president, Stewart Parnell, refused to testify before Congress.

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