Times Wire Reports

Records show a California beef processor that recalled tons of hamburger meat because of salmonella fears was slapped with humane handling violations in a government review of meatpacking plants last year.

At least 28 people in three Western states have reported salmonella-related illnesses since Fresno-based Beef Packers Inc. recalled nearly 826,000 pounds of ground beef Thursday. U.S. Department of Agriculture auditors visited the slaughterhouse in March 2008.

Inspection records show some cattle were being electrically stunned and rendered unconscious so they could be pulled through an area inside the slaughterhouse.

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