Patrick Cudahy Inc. along with its parent Smithfield Foods, have sued the U.S. Navy for losses resulting from a 2009 fire at the meat packing plant, according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. The suit seeks $326 million in losses caused by a stolen military flare set off as part of a 4th of July celebration.

The lawsuit alleges Navy negligence in failing to control its inventory of flares at Camp Wilson in Twentynine Palms, Calif, where Joshua Popp, a U.S. Marine Corps reservist, was stationed in 2007.

Popp took an illumination flare that was later set off by his brother causing the fire that shut down part of the plant for months.

Smithfield Foods Inc. settled claims with insurers over the blaze for $208 million, according to company filings. Those insurers now join the new lawsuit, along with Smithfield.

Both Popp brothers pleaded guilty in 2009 to a crime of second-degree recklessly endangering safety. The brothers were each sentenced to 500 hours of community service and to being locked up for the months of July 2010, July 2011 and July 2013,  at a Milwaukee County Correctional Facility.


Source: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel