Young person arrested for contaminating strawberries
A new alarming trend began went wrong on September 9, when a man was rushed to a hospital in Australia after eating strawberries contaminated with needle. Since then, a young girl has been arrested for mimicking the trend as a prank.
There have now been more than 100 reported cases of sabotage across the country. Authorities are working hard to clamp down on this heinous trend.
A 12-year-old girl has reportedly admitted to inserting needles into strawberries. Police believe that she was taking part in the trend of a copycat prank.
New South Wales (NSW) Acting Assistant Police Commissioner Stuart Smith said a child had been caught in recent days. Many reports stated that the youngster was a boy but it appears Smith made a mistake by calling the child a “he.”
Gippsland Strawberries says the industry is going to have to change its packaging because of the needle contamination scandal. The company was one of the first to start using a top seal on its punnets four years ago. It costs an extra 8 cents a punnet #gippsnews pic.twitter.com/0W9Fl1smlZ— Isabella Pittaway (@bellapittaway) September 18, 2018
For more on this story go to our Twitter account @amomama_usa. He made the mistake during a press conference in Sydney.
It’s been reported that the unnamed girl placed the needle in a strawberry and showed it to friends at her school in the NSW Blue Mountains. Another student told the teachers and the police were called.
Concern over the strawberry scare is rising after needles were reported in other fruit.— News Breakfast (@BreakfastNews) September 18, 2018
We're asking how the needle contamination has impacted you and if it's changed your fruit consumption?
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The girl was interviewed at her home where she reportedly made “full admissions.”
Smith said, “Obviously, in the last few days we found a young person has admitted to a prank, including putting needles in strawberries.”
He said the child would be dealt with under the youth cautioning system. The Attorney-General revealed that there were now been more than 100 reported cases of sabotage across the country.
It appears as though the trend came from Queensland and has spread to Tasmania and Western Australia. In Newcastle, a primary school student found a needle inside a banana that was packed in their lunch box.
🍓🍓🍓#WA #strawberry farmers are dumping fruit, following a price crash in light of the #QLD needle contamination scandal. Bullsbrook grower Jamie Michael told @jo_prendergast if locals continue to avoid buying WA strawbs, some growers won't be able to afford to plant nxt yr! pic.twitter.com/u5jv6KbQOh— Lucie Bell (@lucieboots) September 14, 2018
The child, who is a pupil at St Paul’s Primary School, discovered the fruit was contaminated before biting into it and alerted teachers. Detectives went to investigate and removed the banana for further tests.
A spokesman for the NSW Police said the force would not comment on individual matters and had a “duty of care.” Tasmania Police were said to be investigating 2 more claims of contaminated fruit being sold in Woolworths stores in the Hobart area.
Police also received a report of a metal object found in a strawberry at Kingston around 6 p.m. on Tuesday. The 250g punnet of Pinata brand strawberries had been bought from the Kingston Town Woolworths on Sunday.
On Wednesday, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced that urgent and harsh new Commonwealth criminal penalties for contaminating food. The ongoing crisis has devastated many Australian farmers.
“This is a shocking and cowardly thing for this individual and others who have jumped onto the bandwagon here to have engaged in,” Morrison told reporters in Canberra.
The needle contamination scandal engulfing the Australian strawberry industry is a series of "deliberate acts" designed to instil fear in the community, a Queensland criminologist says https://t.co/tD00gkGHLV pic.twitter.com/Ljb39LvuR0— ABC Brisbane (@abcbrisbane) September 17, 2018
Reforms will be introduced to Parliament to raise the penalty for food tampering from 10 to 15 years. It will be in line with child pornography and terror financing offences.