[11/10/21] Lawsuit Against Chelan Fruit
Last week, a class-action lawsuit was filed in Chelan County Superior Court against the Chelan Fruit cooperative. According to an email from Nathan Arnold of Arnold & Jacobowitz PLLC, the attorney representing the plaintiffs, the suit was file by four members of Trout-Blue Chelan-Magi, Inc. after months of investigation, whistle-blower reporting, and after attorneys for the co-op refused to answer grower questions at a meeting on October 18th, stating instead that the growers should seek individual legal counsel regarding a pending securities transaction with the International Fruit Company.
The growers, in their suit, allege breaches of fiduciary duty by current and former officers and directors, and failure to fully inform them regarding the pending IFC transaction. Additional information obtained since commencement of the suit indicates over $94 million in grower equity on Chelan Fruit’s books as of 2020 was not reflected in the proposed action with IFC, along with a prior credit default swap transaction between IFC and Chelan Fruit which was never disclosed to growers.
The case was made public when, quoting Arnold’s email, “the plaintiffs were threatened with adverse action by agents of the defendant.”
KOZI has contacted both the attorney representing the plaintiffs and Chelan Fruit for comment on the case; we have not heard back from either party as of yet.