- Title: FRANCE: FAMILIES OF CJD VICTIMS FILE SUIT ON POISONING AND MANSLAUGHTER CHARGES.
- Date: 17th November 2000
- Summary: PARIS, FRANCE (17 NOVEMBER, 2000)(REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1. GV: GENERAL VIEW PRESS CONFERENCE 0.06 2. MCU: (SOUNDBITE) (French) SPOKESMAN AND LAWYER FOR CREUTZFELD-JAKOB VICTIMS OLIVIER DUPLESSIS SAYING: Mrs Eboli was particularly outraged when she and her husband learned that their son had been contaminated a few Christmases ago. They were contacted by a doctor who gave them no indication of what the disease meant, who gave them no help in trying to understand, and all the while they had this child at their home. This must never happen to families. It's an illness that's extremely difficult to live with, especially for a family that does not know what it is. 0.31 3. MV: CUTAWAY 0.33 4. MCU: (SOUNDBITE) (French) OLIVIER DUPLESSIS SAYING: We will no longer tolerate a prosecutor failing in his mission, who does not defend society and the victims in a case of public health. 0.45 5. GV: CUTAWAY 0.48 6. MCU: (SOUNBITE) (French) LAWYER FRANCOIS HONNORAT, REFERRING TO ALLEGATIONS THAT BRITAIN CONTINUED TO SELL SUSPECT CATTLE FEED TO FRANCE AFTER ITS SALE WAS BANNED IN BRITAIN, SAYING: The information has allowed us to establish that their was a voluntary strategy of selling off all bovine products. And that the British banned human and animal consumption on their territory in 1988 or 1989 and that there was a strategy of selling off stock to countries within the European Union and especially France. 1.13 7. MCU: (SOUNDBITE) (French) FRANCOIS HONNORAT SAYING: It is totally incomprehensible, given the information that was available in 1989, that France and the European Union did not ban the sale of these products. 1.22 8. GV: CUTAWAY 1.25 9. MCU: (SOUNBITE) (French) DOMINIQUE EBOLI, WHOSE SON ARNAUD IS DYING OF CREUTZFELD JACOB DISEASE, SAYING: As long as our son still had his wits about him, we did not want to take any action. We were afraid that he would be watching TV and would see that the media was talking about him. Then we became sick and tired of hearing people talk only about the breeders, always the breeders. And when you've lived through what we've lived through, it becomes extremely irritating. 1.49 10. CU: (SOUNDBITE) (French) DOMINIQUE EBOLI SAYING: When they established a diagnosis we said right away that we would sue. And the doctor said to us that it would be better for us if we didn't say anying about it. And we thought, what, keep quiet? We wanted to tell everyone that you can't eat in France without getting sick. The doctor said it was so that we wouldn't have the press at our door, but I think it was really just to hush up the whole thing. 2.16 11. MCU: CUTAWAY TO FATHER. 2.19 12. CU: (SOUNDBITE) (French) DOMINIQUE EBOLI SAYING: Yes, I think they didn't make the right decisions at the right time. When there's risk, you make a decision and do something to prevent that risk. It was the same thing with the growth hormones and the contaminated blood. They didn't learn their lesson, they made the same mistakes. We can't keep it quiet when we watch our son dying. It's impossible to keep quiet. 2.41 13. GV: CUTAWAY 2.50 14. SCU: (SOUNDBITE) (English) OLIVIER DUPLESSIS SAYING: This is a kind of first attempt to try to find the truth and establish responsibility. others may follow dealing with ministers responsibility in a special court. 3.07 Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
- Embargoed: 2nd December 2000 12:00
- Location: PARIS, FRANCE
- Country: France
- Reuters ID: LVA14KAMGBQ9QY2OVFZNXYT4RY5U
- Story Text: The families of two French victims of
Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) have filed suit on poisoning
and manslaughter charges in what could lead to a "mad cow"
trial against Britain, France and the European Union.
The parents of 19-year old Arnaud Eboli, who is
currently suffering from the incurable Creutzfeld Jacob
disease, and the relatives of Laurence Duhamel, who died from
it, filed suit in Paris on Friday (November 17) on poisoning
and manslaughter charges, and are demanding to be received by
President Jacques Chirac and Prime Minister Lionel Jospin.
Francois Honnorat, lawyer for the two families and an
association of CJD victims which joined the suit, told
reporters that the case, initially filed against persons
unknown in order to launch a judicial inquiry, is expected to
be expanded to accuse the British and French authorities and
the European Union of responsibility for mad-cow related
deaths. He claims authorities were responsible for
mishandling a BSE cattle disease outbreak in the 1980s and
The pioneer legal action came as a Paris hospital
confirmed it had detected a suspected CJD case. If confirmed
as a suspected case of new variant CJD, the human form of mad
cow, this would be the fourth victim of the illness in France.
Concern over mad cow disease has swept across France,
prompting politicians and health officials to ban suspect
animal feed and yank T-bone steaks and other beef dishes off
restaurant and school cafeteria menus.
Two people have died from nvCJD (new variant
Creutzfeld-Jakob disease) in France and at least 80 in
Britain. Several writs have been issued there against the
health ministry but the claims have been put on ice until
details of government compensation packages are finalised.
The complaint against persons unknown will trigger a
judicial inquiry to establish whether there is a case for a
full-blown legal inquiry and which might be brought to the
courts as the alleged culprits.
The deposition, which runs for over 100 pages, accuses
the British and French authorities and the Brussels-based
European Commission of passing the buck through a decade of
inaction and says they should now be held to account.
It focuses on the period between 1986, the year when BSE
was first identified in British herds of cattle, and 1996 when
scientists drew a link with the human variant nvCJD, resulting
in a worldwide ban on British beef exports.
Honnorat told Reuters he was taking aim at Britain because
it had sold suspect animal feed to France after banning
domestic sale of the same substances at the end of the 1980s.
The EU lifted its ban last year after Britain slaughtered
its entire herd of cattle over 30 months old, but France
maintained its embargo, citing a lack of sufficient
The European Commission was in the firing line for
stalling for a long time before cracking down on the use of
ground-up cattle bones and entrails recycled into cattle feed.
Honnorat is accusing France as well for failing to take
sufficient action in a timely fashion to halt the risks.
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