Arrests over alleged food poisoning scam in NZ

At least five New Zealand cafes have fallen victim to a food poisoning ruse in which an “overweight” woman told the owners she had suffered food poisoning after eating at their premises.

In many cases the woman, who claimed she was pregnant, was given a refund.

Thames Senior Sergeant Graham Shields said Whitianga police arrested two people on Saturday after a cafe reported a woman trying to get money by saying she had become ill after eating there.

“It just so happened that one of the staff had read about the scam in the paper and when this woman came in complaining of food poisoning the staff member went straight to police, Mr Shields told the Times.

A 26-year-old Auckland woman will appear in Thames District Court this week charged with fraud while a 30-year-old Auckland man will also appear charged with assisting her.