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Page last updated at 15:32 GMT, Thursday, 12 February 2009

China milk scandal firm bankrupt

A worker removes the Sanlu logo from its headquarters
Sanlu applied for bankruptcy after the scandal hit

A Chinese food group at the centre of a contaminated milk scandal which killed six babies has been declared bankrupt with debts of $160m (113m).

Sanlu, which had been one of China's most trusted brands, was the first of 22 firms found to have sold the milk.

More than 300,000 children were made ill by the milk, to which melamine had been added to boost protein readings.

The chairwoman of the Sanlu Group, Tian Wenhua, has already been sentenced to life imprisonment.

Other Sanlu executives received sentences of five to 15 years. Two other men were sentenced to death.

But anger among the Chinese population was not only directed at Sanlu. As the scale of the deadly scam became known, Prime Minister Wen Jiabao gave a rare public apology for failing to prevent the crisis.

Chinese product safety regulators have now announced they are investigating whether a unit of the French Danone group also used the toxic chemical.



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