FBI investigates cheese company

Wednesday, February 6, 2002

NEWARK, N.J. -- The FBI confirmed Tuesday that it has searched the headquarters of a New Jersey-based cheese company and removed manufacturing and financial documents.

Suprema Specialties Inc., which makes cheeses under the Suprema di Avellino brand name, began its own investigation of its financial statements after its controller and chief financial officer resigned Dec. 21. Nasdaq officials halted trading of the company's stock the same day.

Since then, several shareholder lawsuits have been filed alleging the company misled investors about the company's financial health and Suprema has hired an accounting firm to check an audit completed by another company.

A message left with the Securities and Exchange Commission was not returned Tuesday.

FBI agent Sherrie Evanina said her agency had searched company headquarters on Jan. 30 and removed documents. She would not comment further.

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