After months of silence, plaintiffs lawyers have been speaking out and adamantly denying allegations that fraud underlies a raft of lawsuits accusing Dole Food Co. Inc. of poisoning workers with the pesticide DBCP on banana plantations in Central America and elsewhere.

Most of the fraud allegations emerged after former Los Angeles County, Calif., Superior Court Judge Victoria Chaney issued a written order in June concluding that plaintiffs lawyers in Nicaraguan DBCP cases had hired “captains” to recruit and coach workers who joined the cases as plaintiffs. They also fabricated work certificates and falsified medical records, she said.

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