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Trial Testimony Tied to Grain Company Collapse Called False

Lawsuit pits group of Arkansas farmers against two grain merchants

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The Arkansas Department of Agriculture has become embroiled in a looming trial related to the 2014 collapse of a Brinkley grain company, with the department's attorney saying a staff member had falsely testified under oath, reports the Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette.

Wade Hodge initially made the claim Jan. 10 in telephone calls to attorneys for plaintiffs and defendants involved in a civil lawsuit set for a jury trial starting Monday in Lonoke.

Hodge testified during a pretrial hearing Tuesday and made the same claim.

The lawsuit pits a group of Lonoke County farmers against an entity of Turner Grain Merchandising Inc. and KBX Inc., a grain dealer in Benton.

The farmers contend they're owed some $6 million for rice from Turner's collapse. The actual lawsuit seeks an unspecified award of compensatory and punitive damages.

Turner Grain Merchandising filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in federal court, listing about $14 million in assets and about $47 million in debts.

The farmers contend that Turner Grain was an agent of KBX, and that KBX was the actual buyer of their rice.

Read the full report here.

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