Two passengers got a mouthful of something horrifying when they bit into sandwiches served aboard Delta Air Lines flights from Amsterdam to the U.S. this weekend — sewing needles stuck in the meat. The FBI is now investigating the incidents, which involved needles found in sandwiches on four separate flights.
The needles were in food served to business class passengers, crew members and government employees flying from Amsterdam to the United States, reports ABC News, and two passengers sustained minor injuries after biting into the sandwiches. Customs and Border Patrol officials found a third needle after confiscating the sandwiches.
“It was on the second bite into the sandwich, it actually poked the top of my mouth. It was about one inch long, straight needle,” Tonges told “Good Morning America.” “Since it punctured the top of my mouth, I had to be put on medication, and we’re waiting to see if there’s any type of substance on the needle. They’re doing their examination right now.”
At least one batch of 17 sandwiches on a flight to Minneapolis-St. Paul seems to have been made by a U.S. company, Gate Gourmet, based at Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport. Delta has replaced turkey sandwiches with pre-packaged pizza.
Delta’s response to the incident:
“Delta is taking this matter extremely seriously and is cooperating with local and federal authorities who are investigating the incident,” Delta spokeswoman Kristin Bauer said in a statement to ABC News. “Delta has taken immediate action with our in-flight caterer at Amsterdam to ensure the safety and quality of the food we provide onboard our aircraft.”
Gate Gourmet said it is treating the incident “as a criminal act.”
“Gate Gourmet immediately launched a full investigation to determine the root cause of this disturbing incident, and we are treating this as a criminal act,” Gate Gourmet spokeswoman Christina Ulosevich said in a statement. “Nothing is more important to Gate Gourmet than the safety and well-being of the traveling public. The company also is cooperating fully with investigations by local and federal authorities and by our customer.”
There was also a needle found by a teenager on a Delta flight from Amsterdam to Atlanta, although that person didn’t give the needles to authorities, as he said he was keeping it as evidence to use in a lawsuit. A federal report shows that teenage passenger was the son of a passenger aboard the Delta flight to Minneapolis who also discovered a needle.
Crew and federal air marshals found additional needles on two other flights.