SAN DIEGO, CA (September 13, 2006) – A lawsuit was filed today against Filiberto’s, the Arizona restaurant chain whose restaurant located at 3446 University Avenue in San Diego was traced as the source of a food poisoning outbreak in late August, 2006. The lawsuit was filed in San Diego County Superior Court on behalf of Nicole Lewis, a San Diego resident who ate at the restaurant and subsequently became ill with Shigellosis, an illness caused by ingestion of the Shigella bacterium. Ms. Lewis is represented by Marler Clark, a Seattle law firm that has represented thousands of victims of foodborne illness, and Keeney, Waite & Stevens, a respected San Diego law firm.

On September 1, 2006, the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency (SDHHS) and the San Diego County Department of Environmental Health announced that they were working together to investigate an apparent Shigella outbreak among customers who had eaten at the University Avenue Filiberto’s. The restaurant was closed on August 31, and according to a news release issued by SDHHS , at least ten people had become ill with apparent Shigella infections after eating at Filiberto’s in late August, three of whom were hospitalized.

According to the complaint, Ms. Lewis became ill with symptoms of Shigellosis the day after being exposed to the Shigella bacterium at Filiberto’s. She experienced painful abdominal cramping, vomiting, and diarrhea – all symptoms of Shigella infection. Ms. Lewis has missed weeks of work, as she has been unable to return to work since submitting a stool sample that cultured positive for Shigella.

“We filed this lawsuit because restaurants have a duty to serve food that is fit for human consumption,” said William Marler, attorney for Ms. Lewis. “Clearly, food contaminated with Shigella, a potentially deadly foodborne pathogen, does not fit that description.”

BACKGROUND: Marler Clark has represented thousands of victims of foodborne illness outbreaks. The firm recently filed a Shigella lawsuit against Gate Gourmet, Inc., a Honolulu, HI airline caterer that supplied Shigella-contaminated food for several airlines with flights departing Honolulu in August, 2004. See for more information on Shigella litigation.

Contact Suzanne Schreck for more information about the lawsuit that was filed. or (206) 346-1879.