11:45 a.m., April 10, 2022
“This is one of the biggest food scandals of the last twenty years, and yet there is still no opening of judicial information! » In a letter sent Friday to the Paris prosecutor, Laure Beccuau, Pierre Debuisson, who represents 37 families seeking justice in the Buitoni pizza case, officially requests the referral “of one or more investigating judges”. The public health center of the Paris prosecutor’s office opened a preliminary investigation on March 22 for “manslaughter”, “deception” and “endangering others”.
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But for the lawyer, this investigation, in which the parties do not have access to the file, is not up to “the looming explosion”. It warns of a risk of “withering away of evidence, [de] disturbance of public order, [de] pressure on witnesses. And pretends to wonder: “Why wait so long when every day counts? »
“A very heavy human case”
According to the lawyer, who denies any conspiracy, if no investigating magistrate is appointed, it “could be interpreted by some as an anomaly which would crystallize a suspicious connivance between the large industrial groups and the justice system on the one hand, and the State on the other”. He supports: “In an ordinary criminal case, this would have been done a long time ago. » However, in the Buitoni file, two children died and are among the 50 confirmed cases identified, indicates Public Health France (SPF) in its latest update published on Wednesday.
In one week, the number of clients of Pierre Debuisson, a lawyer specializing in criminal law and health law, has more than doubled. It is now 37 families, out of the 75 cases being investigated by the teams of the health agency, who are demanding justice. Among the victims, mostly children, adults sometimes were hospitalized after eating Buitoni brand Fraîch’up pizza. For about ten of them, the link is already formally established between the tasting of the pizza and, writes SPF in individual letters, “the occurrence of grouped cases” hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). Some have already filed a complaint, the others are waiting to be able to provide their complete medical file, as requested by the public health center of the Paris prosecutor’s office.
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Pierre Debuisson describes “a humanly very heavy file”. Among its clients, from Lille to Montpellier via Paris, Strasbourg or Nantes, there is “severely poisoned children, who were placed in intensive care for several days, hospitalized for several weeks, with dialysis, sometimes irreversible sequelae, lifelong treatments”. He evokes these suspended parents “two or three days” to the committed vital prognosis of their child, or even this couple whose 12-year-old daughter is now “in a neuro-vegetative state” and “risk of being disconnected”.
These days, Me Debuisson collects purchase invoices or photos of pizza boxes and medical records. “It’s a really noble affairhe says. It feels a bit like David against Goliath. »