A husband and wife are facing charges of tampering in connection with packages of Jell-O pudding mix that were filled with sand.
Alexander Clement, 68, and Christine Clement, 64, were arrested Sunday, Suffolk County police said. The East Northport residents face multiple counts of petit larceny and tampering with a consumer product and would be arraigned later, police said.
Christine Clement bought the boxes from four Long Island stores, removed the contents and refilled them with a mix of salt and sand before returning them for refunds, police said. There was no indication of any intent to harm anyone, only to get the pudding mix without having to pay for it, they said.
The packages weren’t immediately recognized as having been tampered with and were placed back on the shelves for resale. Customers took them home and discovered the altered contents.
The stores notified police on Wednesday and Thursday. The markets are located in Brookhaven, Smithtown, Huntington and Woodbury.
Authorities said they reviewed surveillance videos and followed up on leads to make the arrests.
A telephone message left with the couple on Sunday wasn’t immediately returned.
Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.