- Associated Press - Wednesday, April 5, 2017

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - The South Dakota Supreme Court has rejected a move by ABC to avoid trial in a defamation lawsuit over the television network’s reports on a beef product that critics dubbed “pink slime.”

The high court denied the petition on Monday. The network and correspondent Jim Avila had asked the state Supreme Court to reverse a lower court’s order denying summary judgment.

A spokeswoman for ABC declined to comment.

Beef Products Inc., based in Dakota Dunes, sued in 2012. The company says ABC’s multiple reports misled consumers into believing its lean, finely textured beef product was unsafe and led to plant closures and layoffs.

The company praised the high court’s decision and said it looks forward to presenting its case to a jury. A trial is scheduled to start in June.

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