Sheep-farmer found guilty of Tesco baby food blackmail plot

20 August 2020, 11:16

Heinz baby food that was laced with fragments of a craft knife by Nigel Wright, 45, as part of a plot to blackmail the supermarket chain
Heinz baby food that was laced with fragments of a craft knife by Nigel Wright, 45, as part of a plot to blackmail the supermarket chain. Picture: PA
EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

Lincolnshire sheep farmer Nigel Wright, 45, has been convicted at the Old Bailey of two counts of contaminating food after placing three jars of baby food laced with shards of metal in two Tesco stores

Wright, of Market Rasen, Lincolnshire, was also found guilty of three counts of blackmail for demanding cryptocurrency from Tesco in exchange for revealing where the contaminated food had been placed.

The 45-year-old was convicted of a further charge of blackmail for demanding £150,000 worth of bitcoin from a driver with whom he had had a road rage altercation.

Mr Justice Warby asked for a psychiatric report to be prepared ahead of Wright's sentencing hearing on September 28, saying: "(Wright) has or appears to be mentally disordered."

The judge warned Wright that he faced a lengthy custodial sentence, telling him that punishments for these types of offences range from between eight and 17 years in prison.

Wright did not react as the jury returned its verdict.

A jury at the Old Bailey heard one mother said she "felt sick" when she realised she had been millimetres away from feeding her 10-month-old son part of the craft knife planted in the jar.

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