Woman Arrested in Australia for Allegedly Hiding Needles in Strawberries

An Australian woman has been arrested for allegedly putting needles into commercial strawberries earlier this year. My Ut Trinh, 50, has been charged with seven counts of contaminating goods, and could face up to 15 years in prison under new tougher food tampering laws enacted in Australia in response to the needle scare. In total, 186 strawberries with needles were found across the country, according to the BBC, causing farmers to dump massive quantities of the fruit. It is not yet clear how many incidents were copycats. Two children found needles but were unharmed, and one man was hospitalized after swallowing a needle. Trinh worked as a supervisor at the Berry Licious farm, and prosecutors are arguing that she contaminated the strawberries as an act of sabotage. Australia launched a thorough national investigation to find the contaminator, enlisting multiple government, law enforcement, and intelligence agencies. The scare caused significant damage to Australia’s multimillion-dollar fruit industry, three percent of which comes from strawberries alone. Trinh is being held without bail and is set to appear in court Monday.