Woman Claims to Find Needle in McDonald's Fries, Deletes Facebook Post Once Police Get Involved

New Zealand woman Ash Te Weri claimed on Facebook that she found a needle among a serving of McDonald's french fries included in the restaurant's Happy Meal. According to the NZ Herald, Te Weri, from the city of Whanganui, shared the post to try to warn others—particularly people with young children, given Happy Meals are intended for kids.

But Te Weri has since deleted her Facebook post after people accused her of fabricating the claim to gain compensation from McDonald's. Te Weri did not return calls from the NZ Herald.

McDonald's New Zealand heard about the post and contacted Whanganui Police. Detective Inspector Ross McKay said the company was investigating the claims using CCTV footage. At Te Weri's house, police reportedly found a pack of 20 needles, with one missing.

"They were confident the missing needle was the same one found within the food, and the incident was all 'an honest mistake,'" McKay said. "The woman did the right thing reporting this incident, as did the business. There was no malicious intent here."

Whanganui is on New Zealand's north island and is located about 280 miles south of Auckland.

Australia's fruit industry has been devastated over the past few weeks by people placing metal needles in strawberries. Videos have been shared on social media of farmers dumping tons of strawberries after they've gone unsold.

An investigation launched by Australian officials suggested the crimes involving the strawberries could be the work of saboteurs. Health Minister Greg Hunt has now ordered an investigation by the Food Safety Authority of Australia and New Zealand. He called the suspected sabotage "a very vicious crime" and a "general attack on the public." One man was hospitalized and treated for severe abdominal pains after eating a sabotaged strawberry.

The first damaged fruits were reported in the northwestern state of Queensland last week. Reports then began emerging from Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory. Police have suggested some of the newer cases may be copycat crimes.

Police have stopped releasing statistics to the media about how many cases have been reported. The Queensland government is offering a $72,000 reward for any information that might help catch the culprit or culprits.