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John Morrell, was caught lying about injuries at its plant in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. The congressional investigation concluded that these
companies had failed to report “serious injuries such as fractures, concussions, major cuts, hernias, some requiring hospitalization, surgery,
Congressman Tom Lantos, whose subcommittee conducted the meatpacking inquiry, called IBP “one of the most irresponsible and reckless
corporations in America.” A Labor Department official called the company’s behavior “the worst example of underreporting injuries and
illnesses to workers ever encountered in OSHA’s sixteen-year history.” Nevertheless, Robert L. Peterson was never charged with perjury for
his misleading testimony before Congress. Investigators argued that it would be difficult to prove “conclusively” that Peterson had “willfully”
lied. In 1987 IBP was fined $2.6 million by OSHA for underreporting injuries and later fined an additional $3.1 million for the high rate of...
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- Spring '08