LifestyleWoman fined $2,275 for a sandwich she bought at the airport

Woman fined $2,275 for a sandwich she bought at the airport

The tourist did not fare well with buying a sandwich at the airport.
The tourist did not fare well with buying a sandwich at the airport.
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ed. IKO

3:53 PM EST, November 24, 2023

A 77-year-old woman purchased a chicken sandwich at the airport, intending to savor it during her flight. However, she fell asleep during the journey and didn’t get a chance to consume it. Upon landing, she was greeted with an unexpected surprise.

The woman, June Armstrong, was taking a flight from Christchurch Airport in New Zealand to Brisbane, Australia. She had planned the trip to visit her family and decided on impulse to grab a quick meal before boarding the flight.

A Costly Chicken Sandwich

Falling asleep quickly aboard, she forgot about the sandwich in her bag. Upon arrival in Brisbane, she filled out a required form, declaring that only prescription medicine was in her carry-on luggage.

The border patrol scanned her luggage and discovered the sandwich. Australia strictly regulates the import of products from other countries.

Mrs. Armstrong apologized, offering to discard the sandwich, but she was informed about a fine equating to 3300 Australian dollars, which is approximately $2,275.

"I was in disbelief, '3300 dollars for a small sandwich?' I began crying," she confessed during an interview with the "New Zealand Herald".

Although staff informed her about the possibility of filing an appeal, her husband learned later that they would inevitably have to pay the fine.

Now living on a pension, Mrs. Armstrong shared, "I think about it constantly, even needing sleeping pills. The magnitude of this fine and its impact on our life terrifies me."

The Armstrongs, who primarily rely on their pension and savings - amounting to only $20,700 - were even considering the sale of their camper van to pay the fine.

"We've worked tirelessly all our lives to achieve what we have, and we live a hand-to-mouth existence," lamented the distressed woman.

While the Armstrongs have already filed an appeal, they've yet to receive any response. A representative from the Australian Department of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Forestry clarified that the chicken sandwich had infringed national import regulations, and added that the fine could have risen to as much as 6260 Australian dollars or approximately $4,300.

Despite the harsh circumstances, there appears to be a silver lining. An anonymous entrepreneur from New Zealand has offered to pay off the couple's fine.

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