JavaScript disabled. Please enable JavaScript to use My News, My Clippings, My Comments and user settings.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

Copa Brazilian Churrasco food poisoning legal action launched

The Copa Brazilian Churrasco restaurant in Dickson.

The Copa Brazilian Churrasco restaurant in Dickson.

More than 70 diners who fell victim to Canberra’s largest salmonella outbreak have launched legal action against a Dickson restaurant.

The affected patrons have banded together to take civil action against the Copa Brazilian Churrasco restaurant over the poisoning.

The group, represented by Canberra law firm Aulich Civil Law, filed papers in the ACT Supreme Court on Wednesday afternoon, claiming damages for personal injury.

Aulich Civil Law director Jonathon May said he represented 77 clients on the action. "Each claimant has provided instructions to commence proceedings and to have the matter determined by the court as soon as possible.  As far as we are aware, this is the largest civil action involving food poisoning in Canberra."

About 140 diners fell ill and 15 were admitted to hospital after eating home-made mayonnaise – made using raw eggs later found to contain salmonella – at the restaurant on May 12 last year.

The Copa removed all products containing raw eggs from the menu and issued an apology in the wake of the incident, expressing its "sincere compassion and genuine sorrow".

Court documents said the diners suffered injury, loss and damage as a result of mass poisoning, which they claim was caused by Copa’s negligence, breach of contract, and a statutory breach.

They allege the restaurant failed in its duty to take reasonable precautions for its patrons’ health, to ensure food was fit for consumption, and to have in place measures to guard against the supply of contaminated food.

"The supply of food and beverages by the defendant to the plaintiff was a supply of goods and services within the meaning of the Australian Consumer Law," the claim reads.

"The supply was subject to the guarantee of acceptable quality set out in the ACL. The food and beverages supplied to the plaintiff were contaminated and were not of acceptable quality within the meaning of the [law]. The supply was therefore in breach of the guarantee as to acceptable quality and the plaintiff suffered loss and damage as a result."

Aulich Civil Law claims patrons suffered 16 different injuries and nine separate disabilities, including dehydration, vomiting, anxiety, weight loss, and required pain relief and antibiotic treatment.

The plaintiffs claimed past and future economic loss from missing work and out-of-pocket expenses, including ongoing medical treatment.

The lawsuit will be served to the restaurant this week. Copa will then be given time to file a defence.

Related Coverage

Bad mayonnaise poisons 140 people

Mayonnaise used in the potato salad at the Copa Brazilian Churrasco has been confirmed as the source of the salmonella outbreak.

Copa apologises for salmonella outbreak

The restaurant behind Canberra's largest salmonella outbreak has made a public apology to affected diners.

Salmonella victims all home from hospital

Diners affected as part of Canberra's largest salmonella outbreak have all been discharged from hospital, more than one week after being exposed to bad mayonnaise.

Supplier of eggs under scrutiny

A Victorian egg supplier is under investigation and one person has ongoing health issues following Canberra's largest salmonella outbreak, which has left health professionals ''struck by the severity'' of the symptoms and high infection rate.

Few diners at reopened Copa

The Copa Brazilian Churrasco reopened on Saturday, a week after 140 of its patrons contracted food poisoning.

Restaurant apology draws mixed reviews

There has been mixed reactions to The Copa's apology over food poisoning, as some diners remain off work as symptoms continue.

Restaurant apology over food poisoning

A lawyer for diners who fell ill at The Copa restaurant is calling for an out-of-court settlements with individual damage claims of up to $5000.

Sick diners discharged from hospital

Diners affected as part of Canberra's largest salmonella outbreak have all been discharged from hospital, more than one week after being exposed to bad mayonnaise.

Egg comes before chickens in food poisoning

There has been an average of 100 cases a year of salmonella poisoning - or salmonellosis - in the ACT since 1991, but the number is actually higher as not everyone affected seeks medical attention.

Salmonella victims taking legal action

Dozens of restaurant patrons are expected to launch legal action after they suffered food poisoning last weekend.

An old favourite moves on, now let's go to Rio

After nearly 15 years, the original example of one of Canberra's most popular restaurant chains has closed its doors.

Nine in hospital in salmonella outbreak

More than 50 people have fallen ill and at least nine have been admitted to hospital after a salmonella outbreak at a newly-opened Dickson restaurant.

Raw eggs warning to restaurants

Canberra restaurants that use raw eggs in their food are "dicing with death", according to the ACT's chief health officer.

Related Coverage

Featured advertisers

Special offers

Credit card, savings and loan rates by Mozo