Washington, April 23 (IANS) A woman said on Monday that she was facing a $500 fine from the US customs agency after a free apple that she was given as a snack on a plane was found in her bag.
Crystal Tadlock, travelling to the US from Paris, said she was saving the fruit for her onward flight to Denver, Colorado, reports the BBC.
But the apple was revealed in a random search by US border agents after her first flight landed in Minneapolis.
US Customs and Border Patrol would not comment on the case, but said all agricultural items should be declared.
The apple was handed out in a plastic Delta Air Lines bag.
When the apple was found, Tadlock told the agent that she had just received it from the airline and asked whether she should throw it out or eat it, the BBC reported. Instead the agent handed her a $500 fine.
Tadlock now has the choice of paying the fine or fighting the penalty in court. She told the Denver-based broadcaster KDVR she wanted to take the case to court.
Delta Air Lines has issued a statement saying that “we encourage our customers to follow US Customs and Border Protection protocols”.