National News

Jul 31, 2014 6:10 PM by AP

Man accused of putting needles in packaged meat

EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. (AP) - Federal prosecutors are accusing an Illinois man of inserting sewing needles into packaged ground beef for more than a year at a supermarket in his hometown.

Sixty-eight-year-old Ronald Avers of Belleville was charged Wednesday with seven felony counts of tampering with consumer products.

The FBI alleges in court filings that a Shop 'n Save grocery store reported on July 9 at least seven cases since May of last year in which sewing needles were found in packaged meat products.

The criminal complaint alleges one customer found a needle in her mouth while eating and another reported being stuck in the hand. Other customers said they found needles in the meat they bought but were not injured.

A message left with Avers' federal public defender wasn't returned.

Avers remained jailed Thursday.

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