One of three men accused of conspiring to falsify temperature records for poultry to be shipped to Russia has entered a guilty plea. Terry White was a warehouse supervisor for Gulf Coast Cold Storage in 2009 when he directed others to falsify blast-freezer records and restack loads of poultry to disguise portions that were not cold enough to load onto ships. Shipping the poultry at higher than required temperatures was a violation of a trade agreement with Russia. Gulf Coast Cold Storage is a tenant at the Port of Pascagoula.
White accepted a plea agreement Tuesday to conspiracy to commit offenses against the United States. The maximum penalty is five years in prison and a $250,000 fine, the Sun Herald reported. He avoided trial on four other charges with additional penalties of up to 18 years in prison and fines of $760,000. White will be sentenced Aug. 19 in U.S. District Court.
Two other men who were supervisors at the business are set for trial June 3. Gerald Miller and Patrick McClain will be prosecuted on the conspiracy charge. Miller also will be tried on three counts of making false statements to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
They are accused of circumventing trade-agreement requirements on poultry temperatures to increase productivity at the business. The three men remain free on unsecured bonds.