A Nebraska federal judge blasted Nebraska Beef Ltd. on Thursday
for serious discovery violations in a class action accusing the
meatpacking company of failing to pay workers for time spent
donning and doffing protective gear, but refused to hand employees
an immediate win.
The ruling, handed down by U.S. District Judge Joseph F.
Bataillon, comes months after he granted a mistrial, determining
Nebraska Beef failed to produce court-ordered logs showing the
company was in compliance with sanitation procedures.
Though the court denied the employees' motion for default
judgment, Judge Bataillon ordered the company to pay costs and
attorneys' fees associated with preparation for trials that
occurred in January and May, under the Fair Labor Standards Act,
and to cover any additional costs related to the employees' motion
Judge Bataillon said Nebraska Beef acted in bad faith, and warned
the company that although the court wouldn't grant default at this
time, if there were any more significant issues in the case he
would likely grant default in favor of the employees on the issue
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