Woman, 50, Arrested After Needles Found In Strawberries

Police Arrest 50-Year-Old Woman Over Strawberry Needle Contamination

BREAKING: Woman arrested following major investigation into national strawberry contamination

One man was taken to hospital in September after swallowing one of the strawberries.

My Ut Trinh appeared in Brisbane Magistrates Court on Monday, charged with seven counts of contamination of goods with intent to cause economic loss.

Queensland Police said it has conducted a national investigation "with multiple government, law enforcement and intelligence agencies" - as well as a police task force in the state.

A 50-year-old woman has been arrested in connection with a food tampering scare in Australia that saw scores of people, including a 7-year-old girl, bite into store-bought strawberries with needles inside, police said Sunday.

A safety warning over the strawberries has been in effect since 12 September.

"This is a major and unprecedented police investigation with a lot of complexities involved", Mr Wacker said in a statement.

A Queensland strawberry farm supervisor seeking revenge over a workplace grievance sparked a nationwide crisis by planting needles in fruit, a court has heard.

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The Victorian government has offered to pay for the procedure and recovery, expected to cost at least A$350,000 (US$254,740). The twins, who were delivered by C-section, flew to Australia last month for the surgery that would finally divide them.

Strawberries containing needles were first reported in Queensland, the third most populous of Australia's six states, on September 8 after a 21-year-old man who had unwittingly consumed one of the contaminated berries was rushed to the hospital with "severe abdominal pains".

Police say the accused woman faces a maximum of 10 years in prison if convicted, as one charge alleges aggravation.

Police did not reveal the reasons and motives behind her alleged involvement.

Superintendent Wacker said the case was finally broken open upon information received by Victoria Police as part of the interstate investigation.

A massive investigation was launched after farmers were left with no choice but to dump tonnes of strawberries and stores were forced to pull them from sales.

The contamination saga spread from Queensland across the country, with dozens of reports of contaminated punnets.

Queensland Strawberry Growers Association vice president Adrian Schultz thanked police for their work.

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