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Marler Blog Providing Commentary on Food Poisoning Outbreaks & Litigation

First Lawsuit Filed in China Over Infant’s Melamine Milk Death

I am humbled to see Chinese lawyers standing up for the victims of this melamine tragedy despite being pressured to walk away.

The family of a baby whose death has been blamed on toxic milk filed suit against one of China’s largest dairies, while another dairy ensnared in the scandal said it was a victim of unscrupulous subcontractors. The lawsuit filed Monday against Shijiazhuang Sanlu Group Co. was over the May 1 death of 6-month-old Yi Kaixuan in the northwestern city of Lanzhou, the family’s lawyer said. It is the first to be filed over a child who died from drinking the tainted milk and asks for almost US$160,000 in damages.

The Yi family’s lawyer, Dong Junming, said he turned the lawsuit in at Lanzhou’s No. 2 Intermediate People’s Court where clerks told him they would notify him Tuesday as to whether it would be accepted. At least two other lawsuits have been filed against Sanlu – the company at the center of the uproar – in recent weeks by parents of children suffering from kidney stones. It is not clear if courts will allow these suits to progress.