Three hundred farmers who brought a class-action lawsuit against OK Industries saw their complaint upheld in court for $14.5 million.
The farmers had alleged that the company used its status as the only buyer in the area to manipulate in its favor what it paid to the farmers. "We wanted fair treatment," said Charlie Been, a former chicken farmer who was part of the lawsuit. The case went to trial in 2008, resulting in a jury verdict for the farmers of $21.1 million that was later reduced to $14.5 million. Attorney for OK Industries Charles Goodwin said he does not know whether the company will appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court or ask for a rehearing with the full court of appeals.