An Auckland man has been sentenced to intensive supervision after spiking two McDonald's ice cream sundaes with sleeping pills.
The 22-year-old Rodney man, who was not an employee of the global fast-food restaurant, was sentenced today in the Auckland District Court in front Judge Brooke Gibson.
He had earlier pleaded guilty to one charge of attempting to stupefy after placing prescription medication in the ice creams, which he had bought from Te Atatu McDonald's in May last year and taken home.
The young man, who has no previous convictions, was supported in court today by his family.
Judge Gibson said: "The facts are very unusual."
He also declined to grant the man a discharge without conviction and said future employers, particularly those which employ women, have a right to know of the offending.
The man was sentenced to one year of intensive supervision and also granted permanent name suppression by Judge Gibson.
Details about why the man was granted permanent name suppression are also suppressed.
Court documents, provided to the Herald, say that after the complainants discovered something untoward about their sundaes they sought medical attention and raised concerns on social media.
"We ate them at home, and we all found traces and whole pills of prescription medicine. My sister ingested one. I found one in my mouth and spat it out," one said on social media.
"The police are involved. We got off so lucky. Had a child ingested it. There would be more of an issue. I don't know who would do such a thing but it's disgusting!!"
The social media fallout saw attention focused on the fear that members of the public might be at risk from buying food from the McDonald's outlet.
However, it later transpired that the accused had bought the sundaes and laced them with the sleeping pills.
Speaking to the Herald, one of the victims explained it all started when her sister, while eating her sundae, complained about "an extremely funny taste".
"My partner and my sister went to leave when I found one [pill] in mine. We went straight to hospital. They said it was someone's medication. But it's not enough to do any damage so suggested keeping going with police."
Court documents show McDonald's has been cleared of any wrong-doing, while a McDonald's spokesperson has also said the investigation absolved all staff at the restaurant.