The Lithuanian Prosecutor General's Office has turned to Russia with a request for legal assistance in the case of violations possibly committed by Judex, a Kaunas-based frozen food company, and actions of veterinary authorities, however, have not received a response for a long time.
Petras Gražulis and Judex
© DELFI montažas

The investigation was opened a year ago. The number of suspects remains unchanged at six.

"We are held back by the tasks we have been assigned – we have turned to the Russian Federation, we need to carry out certain actions in Russia. Some actions were performed in Russia, we need to collect documents and interview people who were aware of the actions, and we have not received a response in seven to eight months," prosecutor Rolandas Stankevičius of the Prosecutor General's Office told BNS.

The Lithuanian authorities asked their Russian colleagues whether they had received the request for legal assistance, the Russian side confirmed receipt of the request and said there were no signs of Russia refusing to cooperate in the request.

Furthermore, specialists were instructed to conduct a financial investigation at Judex, however, no conclusions have been received yet.

Lithuania's Special Investigation Service suspects that Judex sought to influence the Lithuanian State Food and Veterinary Service via MP Petras Gražulis to avoid penalties for violations. In the probe, suspicions of influence peddling and abuse of powers have been brought against Jonas Milius, former chief of the service. The law-enforcement also suspect that the state food watchdog or subordinate institutions could have received information from Russia about discovery of listeria bacteria in Judex production, however, concealed the fact and did not take action.

Listeria bacteria was confirmed in ten shipments of Judex frozen products, including nine intended for the European Union (EU) market and one planned for exports to Russia.

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