This spring, Justice Department prosecutors were on the verge of charging biotech giant Monsanto with a felony for illegally spraying a banned, highly toxic pesticide and nerve agent in Hawaii, not far from beachside resorts on Maui. But then, according to an internal April 2019 government document viewed by the Project on Government Oversight (POGO), that decision was overruled.
Monsanto, battling a slew of high-profile lawsuits contending that its Roundup weed killer causes cancer, had its Washington lawyers intervene at the highest levels of DOJ to stop the felony case, which has not been previously reported. A key attorney handling the matter for Monsanto, Alice S. Fisher, is a former senior DOJ official alleged to have played a part in keeping Jeffrey Epstein’s controversial plea deal secret from his victims more than a decade ago, although some U.S. officials have provided other reasons why victims were not notified. Fisher denies playing a decision-making role in the Epstein matter.