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Press Release

Tampa Man Pleads Guilty To Violations Of Federal Meat Inspection Act

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Florida

Tampa, Florida – United States Attorney A. Lee Bentley, III announces that Jorge F. Ortega (27, Tampa) yesterday pleaded guilty to three violations of the Federal Meat Inspection Act. The violations include selling adulterated or misbranded meat, selling uninspected meat, and the improper slaughter of swine.  Ortega faces a maximum penalty of 3 years in federal prison for each violation.

According to court documents, Ortega was the operator of Jorge’s Farm.  He was responsible for the oversight of its activities, including the slaughtering, processing, handling, storing, and selling of swine in commerce, for human consumption. On October 27, 2011, Ortega slaughtered a swine in an inhumane manner. That swine was contaminated with insects and other filth.  Ortega then sold the swine carcass to an undercover agent without labeling it properly and without the required federal meat inspection.

This case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Food Safety and Investigative Service (FSIS) and the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jennifer L. Peresie.

Updated January 26, 2015