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>> A 50-year-old woman has been charged in Australia with contaminating strawberries with sewing needles. That case sparked one of the country's biggest food scares when it broke in September. Since then, there has been 200 complaints of needles found in the berries and other fruits across the country. Police say the woman named My Ut Trinh was a formal employee of one of the affected brands.
They say she is from the Australian State of Queensland. She is the first suspect to be charged in the case. And now faces up to ten years behind bars if found guilty. The Australian government toughen sentencing and criminalized hoax claims, in a bit to contain the growing crisis.
Several major supermarkets pulled strawberries from shelves as shoppers grew weary. And export were halted to major buyers in New Zealand. It forced some growers to dump their produce at the peak of the season, that has triggered widespread warnings of bankruptcies in an industry that brings in over US $100 million.