Update: Man charged with ‘contaminating or interfering with goods’ after several items of food were ‘injected with unknown substance’ at London supermarkets

Avatar admin | August 27, 2021

A man has been charged with contaminating or interfering with goods with intent at three supermarkets in west London.

The suspect, Leoaai Elghareeb, 37, from Fulham, is due before Westminster Magistrates’ Court later today.

Officers in forensic suits showed up at Fulham Palace Road on Thursday at three stores – a Tesco Express, Little Waitrose, and Sainsbury’s Local – after the incidents on Wednesday evening.

The officers were seen packing processed meat packs into health hazard bags to be sent for chemical testing on Thursday morning. They were investigating if any other shops had been targeted.  

Following the incidents, Hammersmith & Fulham Council advised shoppers to throw away anything bought from the three shops. 

It said: ‘Members of the public are advised as a precaution to dispose of any food items bought from these supermarkets [on Wednesday] evening.

‘H&F Council’s Environmental Health team are now working with the supermarket branches affected.’ 

The scenes remained taped off into yesterday morning around the stores affected. 

A petrol station manager on the road yesterday said: ‘Police came in and told us to close about 8pm [on Wednesday].

‘We only opened about half an hour ago at about 11am. I think it’s the same with anywhere that was open yesterday.’   

On Thursday the Metropolitan Police said: ‘Police have arrested a man in Hammersmith and Fulham on suspicion of contamination of goods with intention of causing public harm or anxiety after foodstuffs at supermarkets were injected with needles.

‘Officers were called at around 7.40pm after a man was reported to be shouting abuse at people in the street. The man is reported to have gone into three supermarkets in Fulham Palace Road SW6 and injected foodstuffs with a number of needles.

‘He has been taken into police custody. The supermarkets have closed and crime scenes are in place.

‘The food items affected are believed to be processed meat and microwaveable products. 

‘It is currently unknown as to how many items have been contaminated, or what with. 

‘Investigations are ongoing to establish if other businesses in the area are involved in the incident.’  

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