Arvada woman trying to stomach $500 fine for free airline snack

Crystal Tadlock from Colorado says she was fined $500 and lost her Global Entry Status because she saved an apple Delta gave her on her way home from Paris

A Delta passenger paid US$500 at US Customs for an apple the airline gave out as a free snack on a flight from France.

Tadlock says a Delta flight attendant handed her an apple toward the end of her flight from Paris. According to the Colorado woman, the agent took the plastic bag with the Delta logo containing an apple out of her bag and began to ask questions about the snack.

"I wasn't hungry at the time, so I jammed it in my carry-on", said Tadlock.

A CBP spokesperson said in a comment to KDVR that "all agricultural items must be declared". However, the fine isn't for anything she brought back from her trip overseas.

Once Tadlock's plane arrived in the United States, she made her way through Customs.

"He had asked me if my trip to France was expensive and I said, 'yeah, '" she told the TV station. "And then he said it's about to get a lot more expensive after I charge you $500". An agent pulled out the apple, which was still in a plastic pouch from Delta.

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The passenger told KDVR she's upset and frustrated an innocent mistake resulted in a $500 fine and the loss of her Global Entry Status - which allows expedited clearance for pre-approved, low-risk travellers upon arrival in the United States.

The airline released a statement saying, "We encourage our customers to follow U.S. Customs and Border Protection Protocols".

The statement went on to clarify that every single fruit or vegetable entering the country must be declared and inspected by a U.S.

Tadlock chose to fight the fine in court and will bring the case before a judge.

"I understand the laws and the department of agriculture doesn't want certain insects in the US".

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