A new step in the search for the truth about a health scandal.
The investigations into the Buitoni (Nestlé) pizza scandal, contaminated with E. coli bacteria and suspected of having caused the death of two children, were entrusted to an investigating judge on Thursday, we learned from the Paris prosecutor's office, confirming information from RMC.
The judicial information was opened in particular for manslaughter against a person, involuntary injuries concerning 14 people, marketing of a product dangerous to health and endangering others, according to the same source. .
On March 30, the health authorities announced that they had established a link between the consumption of these pizzas and several serious cases of contamination before the prefect of the Nord department banned, two days later, the production of pizzas at the Caudry site. .
A total of 55 children and one adult have been infected, without a direct link having been established, to date, for all these cases, with the consumption of pizzas, according to the health authorities.
Olivier Véran “devastated” by the death of two children
A preliminary investigation had already been underway since March 22 at the public health center of the Paris prosecutor's office, for "deception on goods, exhibition or sale of corrupt or falsified and harmful food products for health, placing on the market of a product harmful to health, endangering others, involuntary injury and manslaughter”.
In this context, searches took place on April 13 in the Caudry factory, in the North, where the pizzas of the Fraîch'Up range were manufactured, and at the headquarters of the Nestlé group, in the Hauts-de-Seine. .
In February, the health authorities had been alerted by the resurgence of cases of kidney failure in children, linked to contamination by Escherichia coli.
Read alsoE.coli bacteria: before Buitoni pizzas, Nestlé had already been entangled in a health scandal
On March 18, Nestlé announced the withdrawal of pizzas from the Fraîch'Up range marketed since June 2021, after being informed of the presence of the bacteria in the dough of a product.
Inspections had pointed to “the presence of rodents” and the “lack of maintenance and cleaning of manufacturing, storage and passage areas”.
Shortcomings which could be the cause of the presence of pathogenic bacteria in the products then marketed.
“There are two children who died from having eaten a pizza (…) I assure you that it is poignant”, declared Thursday on RMC and BFMTV the Minister of Health Olivier Véran, saying he was “devastated” by this “absolutely terrible human drama” which “should never happen” but “could not be avoided”.