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Investigators Open Criminal Case Over Omsk Milk Bath Incident

One of the photographs of the incident at the cheese factory.

Investigators have opened a criminal case against staff at a string-cheese factory in Omsk after evidence of gross hygiene violations was uncovered.

Torgovy Dom Syra, or Trading House of Cheese, first came under suspicion when photos of staff members cavorting in a tub full of milk at the factory appeared on social media website VK.

Inspections showed that the factory's production practices did not meet basic health and safety requirements, Investigative Committee spokesman Vladimir Markin said Friday in a statement.

The Federal Consumer Protection Service on Thursday banned the sale of the company's products and investigators have asked people to report any cases of food poisoning caused by its products.

The factory, which has also been temporarily closed, has churned out more than 49 tons of cheese so far this year and its products were stocked in stores in 14 Russia cities, Markin said.

The suspects face a maximum of two years in jail if convicted on charges of manufacturing products that don't meet the required sanitary standard.

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