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UPDATE: Tyson suspends Iowa plant managers amid virus betting claim

Tyson pork processing plant in Waterloo, Iowa
Courtesy: KWWL

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) -- Tyson Foods has suspended top officials at its largest pork plant and launched an investigation into allegations that they bet on how many workers would get infected during a widespread coronavirus outbreak.

Tyson Foods President and CEO Dean Banks said Thursday that he was "extremely upset" about the allegations against managers at its plant in Waterloo, Iowa, saying they do not represent the company's values.

He says the Arkansas-based company has retained the law firm of Covington & Burling LLP to conduct an investigation, which will be led by former U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder.

He says if the claims are confirmed, "we'll take all measures necessary to root out and remove this disturbing behavior from our company."

By RYAN J. FOLEY
Associated Press


IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) -- Lawyers for the estates of dead workers allege that the top official at Tyson Foods' largest pork plant created a pool for managers to bet on how many workers would get infected during a coronavirus outbreak.

In amended wrongful death lawsuits filed in federal court, plaintiffs' lawyers allege that Tyson's Waterloo plant manager Tom Hart "organized a cash buy-in, winner-take-all betting pool for supervisors and managers to wager how many employees would test positive."

Hart allegedly organized the pool last spring as the virus spread through the plant, ultimately infecting more than 1,000 of its 2,800 workers, killing at least six and sending many others to the hospital.

A spokesman for Arkansas-based Tyson didn't respond to messages seeking comment.

By RYAN J. FOLEY
Associated Press

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