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A Colorado-based poultry producer will pay nearly $107 million in criminal fines after pleading guilty for anti-competitive practices, the Department of Justice (DOJ) announced Tuesday.

Pilgrim’s Pride, a major broiler chicken producer, acknowledged that they had taken part in a conspiracy to reduce and “eliminate” competition for products in the United States from early 2012 to 2017, a DOJ press release stated.

The company pled guilty to conspiring to fix prices and rig bids for chicken products. The conspiracy had affected roughly $361 million in Pilgrim’s broiler chicken product sales, including its sales to fast food giant Kentucky Fried Chicken, according to the plea agreement.

Pilgrim’s Chief Executive Officer Fabio Sandri made the guilty plea on behalf of the company at a hearing in Denver before U.S. District Judge Raymond Moore, Reuters reported.

One of the Nation’s Largest Chicken Producers Pleads Guilty to Price Fixing and is Sentenced to a $107 Million Criminal Fine

— Justice Department (@TheJusticeDept) February 23, 2021

“Today’s guilty plea demonstrates our unwavering commitment to prosecuting companies that violate the nation’s antitrust laws, especially when it involves something as central to everyday life as the food we eat,” the DOJ’s Antitrust Division’s Acting Assistant Attorney General, Richard Powers said in the statement.

Prior to Pilgrim’s guilty plea, 10 executives from the poultry industry, including former Pilgrim’s Pride CEOs Jayson Penn and Bill Lovette, faced indictments on price-fixing charges, Reuters reported. None of the ten had pled guilty.

Pilgrim’s Pride, owned mainly by the Brazilian meatpacking company JBS SA, is one of the U.S.’ largest poultry product producers, according to Reuters. (RELATED: Key West, Florida, Prepares Legislation Against Chickens)

The DOJ’s Antitrust Division with assistance from the U.S. Department of Commerce Office Of Inspector General, FBI Washington Field Office, and United States Department of Agriculture Office Of Inspector General, is undertaking an ongoing federal antitrust investigation into price fixing, bid rigging, and other anticompetitive behavior in the poultry industry.

Other poultry products producers such as Tyson, Perdue Farms, and Sanderson Farms, face similar federal lawsuits in Chicago over alleged rigging of prices going back to 2008, Reuters reported.

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Tags: the doj’s antitrust the doj’s antitrust doj’s antitrust pilgrim’s pride office of inspector general the doj’s the doj’s reuters reported chicken product department united states price fixing according the company the company guilty plea

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Briana DeJesus Statement on Quitting Teen Mom 2

MTV "Teen Mom 2" star Briana DeJesus released a statement about quitting the MTV reality show.

Teen Mom 2 star Briana DeJesus released a statement about quitting the MTV reality show, which confused some fans. Rumors swirled about the star leaving the series after she shared a post from a producer who penned a goodbye message to the DeJesus family. While some fans took that to mean the DeJesus family was fired from the show, or quit, it was actually the producer who said she won’t be collaborating with the family any longer.

MTV producer Anne-Marie Robinson worked exclusively with the DeJesus family and penned a special note, hinting they would no longer be working together. “The DeJesus family is amazing and I’m so grateful to have met them and to have been their producer,” she said.

“Bri is honestly an exceptional mom and Roxanne and Britt care more about the lil ones and each other than life,” she continued. “Being around such a supportive, loving family every day was truly a blessing. Love you guys!!”

In a follow-up post, Ann-Marie clarified that she wasn’t quitting Teen Mom 2. “Love reading gossip articles about yourself that are completely false,” she wrote on February 24. “Not retiring any time soon, unfortunately. Unless someone wants to be my sugar daddy.”

Briana Said the Rumors Were ‘100% Not True’ View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Briana Dejesus (@_brianadejesus)

Briana and her family are not quitting the show. She spoke with The Hollywood Gossip and included the link in her bio, though the caption for her post was cryptic in nature.

It reads: “My official statement on quitting #TeenMom2 ????#LinkInBio.” Briana dismantled the comments for the post.

In her statement to THG Briana was clear: “While I know there have been rumors and speculation that I have quit Teen Mom 2, I can state on the record that is 100% not true.”

“My family and I are here to stay as long as MTV will have us. Sorry to the haters, but you’ll be seeing more of us on the next season,” she continued. “To all my supporters I see you, I thank you, I appreciate you, and look forward to continuing to share my life with you.”

Briana vaguely addressed her producer’s post. “I understand people have been talking due to certain photos that have been circulating but I can assure you they have nothing to do with me leaving the show,” she said. “And no, we were not fired from the show either lol.”

Briana’s Ex Meets With Kailyn View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Devoin (@devoinaustin)

Briana and her ex-boyfriend Devoin Austin have been feuding on social media for months. She also had a notorious falling out with Teen Mom 2 cast member Kailyn Lowry. Devoin appeared on Kailyn’s “Coffee Convos” podcast with co-host Lindsie Chrisley, where they discussed his “perspective.”

“New episode @coffeeconvospodcast is out ???????? we got to know @devoinaustin better & hear his perspective on things,” Kailyn shared on Instagram. “Download and subscribe on the apple podcast app, Spotify or your fav podcast app.”

Devoin thanked Kailyn for inviting him. “Thank you!!! Hope you guys enjoy,” he said under her post.

“Make sure you guys check out the next @coffeeconvospodcast,” he wrote on his page. “Was a pleasure to be invited. Let me know what you think about it.”

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