Criminal Prosecutions Get Serious as the Regulatory System Sinks to Its Knees

August 27, 2015

The food industry was rocked by last month’s news that the U.S. Probation Office for the Middle District of Georgia has recommended a life sentence for Stewart Parnell, former CEO of the Peanut Corporation of America (PCA), following his multiple-felony conviction for knowingly selling tainted peanut butter that ended up killing nine people. Some are evincing shock and dismay at the harshness of the proposed penalties — a reaction that perfectly reflects the insulated world of white collar crime. But it’s unwarranted given the facts of this disturbing case.

Whatever happens with Parnell, we’re likely to see many more such…