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The Latest: Workplace grievance alleged for fruit sabotage

SYDNEY (AP) — The Latest on the arrest in Australian strawberry sabotage cases (all times local):

2:30 p.m.

An Australian magistrate says she won’t consider bail for a woman accused of putting needles in strawberries until her motive for sabotaging the fruit becomes clearer.

Magistrate Christine Roney said in court Monday that prosecutors were alleging former strawberry farm worker My Ut Trinh was “motivated by spite or revenge” over a workplace grievance.

The recalls of the fruit prompted by the first cases of the sabotage in September devastated Australia’s strawberry industry.

Trinh was arrested Sunday and has been charged with seven counts of contamination of goods with intent to cause economic loss, and faces up to 10 years in jail in if convicted.

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11 a.m.

Police have made their first arrest in the cases of strawberry sabotage in Australia, in which sewing needles were found in fruit sold in six states.

Police in Queensland state say they’ve arrested 50-year-old My Ut Trinh and charged her with seven counts of goods contamination.

Detective John Walker of the State Crime Command said she worked in the strawberry industry near the town of Caboolture, north of Brisbane.

She was due to appear in court Monday. Each count against her carries a maximum 10-year prison sentence.

Australia’s strawberry industry was devastated after recalls of the fruit were ordered following the initial needle discovery in September and several others believed to be copycat actions.

No injuries were reported.

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