A woman named Crystal Tadlock was recently fined $500 at the U.S border control checkpoint for keeping an in-flight snack, an apple, in her bag and then bringing it through Cx ustoms!
An apple a day might keep the doctor away, but seems like it doesn’t do much against U.S. Customs and Border Patrol. And Crystal found this out the hard way, after she was fined for carrying an innocent apple in her handbag. Tadlock was fresh off the flight from Paris and received a harsh welcome back in the U.S.
False. I did not enjoy the apple. Instead I received a $500 violation, had my global entry revoked (first time I’ve used it) AND I will be searched on every flight for the rest of my life ?#deltaforbiddenfruit #crystaltadlock #delta #applegate pic.twitter.com/ysGfTguppG
— VeganQuesoHead (@VeganQuesoHead) April 22, 2018
The confused woman traveled with Delta Airlines from Paris. At some point during the flight, the flight attendant passed out snacks for all the passengers. Tadlock received an apple but she wasn’t hungry at the time so she decided to keep the apple in her handbag, to have it at a later time.
When Tadlock reached Customs, she was stopped by an agent who asked to go through her bag. He then took out the plastic bag with the apple in it. The bag clearly had Delta Airlines’ moniker imprinted on it. However, this detail didn’t do much to help Tadlock’s case.
She spoke to KDVR, a local station affiliated with FOX News in Colorado and told them about her frustrating experience. Reportedly, the agent was quite harsh with her and made some snarky comments that left her quite annoyed.
“He had asked me if my trip to France was expensive and I said, ‘Yeah.’ I didn’t really get why he was asking that question, and then he said ‘It’s about to get a lot more expensive after I charge you $500,'” she recalled.
She was still quite confused at this point and even when she asked what she’ had done. However, she wasn’t given a straight answer.
Tadlock chose a logical approach: she asked the agent if she could eat the apple or simply throw it away. However, she was still handed a fine.
“It’s really unfortunate someone has to go through that and be treated like a criminal over a piece of fruit,” she said.
It does sound pretty ridiculous but, apparently, U.S. Customs had their reasons. The Customs officials said, “All agriculture items must be declared.”
Any items that are not declared will be confiscated and perpetrators charged with a $1000 fine.
Crystal complained that Delta Airlines hadn’t warned her about these strict rules; she felt mistreated. She also said that airport authorities should have been more understanding, considering the apple was in an airline bag.
However, she is worried about more than just the fine. Tadlock could lose her ‘Global Entry’ status, which is a facility provided to pre-approved and low-risk passengers entering the U.S. Anyone with this provision can received expedited clearance on entry.
She’s not going to back down easily, though; Crystal is taking the case before a judge because she has a lot on the line aside from monetary payment. However, her case might not be the strongest because U.S. Customs asserts its right to prohibit agricultural items from entering the country in order to protect against plant pests and animal diseases.