Iowa Public Television


Judge Throws Out Tyson Verdict

posted on April 23, 2004

A federal judge on Friday threw out a jury's $1.28 billion verdict against the nation's largest beef packer, Tyson Fresh Meats Inc., ruling that it did not illegally manipulate cattle prices.

U.S. Senior District Judge Lyle Strom said the cattlemen who sued the Arkansas-based company failed to produce evidence at trial to support the verdict "with respect to both liability and damage."

Strom granted a motion filed by Tyson, which had denied using its contracts with a select few ranchers to drive down cattle prices for other producers.

Tyson Fresh Meats, the beef division of Tyson Foods, had asked Strom to throw out the jury's Feb. 17 verdict against the company or grant a new trial. The group of cattlemen suing Tyson wanted the judge to approve the verdict and set a schedule for damage claims and other relief.

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