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No PCP Found in Tests for More Tainted Milk

TIMES STAFF WRITER

Laboratory tests found no traces of PCP in 13 cans of sweetened condensed milk with the same code as the cans that a Pasadena family said poisoned several of its members, officials said Thursday.

The tests were conducted by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department on other cans of the milk that were removed Wednesday from the store where the family bought the milk, said Pasadena City Hall spokeswoman Laurie Cottrell.

Yolanda Aldaz, 29, who was poisoned last week, along with her 57-year-old mother and her children, charged Thursday that police treated them as drug suspects and unnecessarily took their children away. She said police harassed the family and interfered with their medical care.

Lab tests conducted by the Sheriff’s Department found PCP in a 14-ounce can of La Lechera milk that the Aldaz family used in a rice pudding. The milk was bought Feb. 27 at Louis Foods, 451 S. Sierra Madre Blvd. It bore the code V0277E on top.

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Ten other cans were sold at the store within the same time period. One has since been turned in but has yet to be tested, Cottrell said.

Nestles USA Inc., which markets the product, has recalled all La Lechera milk cans nationwide. About 2,400 cans bear lot number V0277E, Cottrell said.

Frank Jameson, a supervisor in the Pasadena Police Department’s youth services division, said the tampering appears to have been done before the milk was sold because the can bore no physical evidence of tampering. The federal Food and Drug Administration has since begun an investigation, he said.

“The Police Department took an accusatory position instead of an investigatory position,” said attorney Carlos Fournier, who represents the family.

Jameson said the case “was handled very appropriately. It was consistent with our experience and with the experience of other police departments.”


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