One man's pop art is another’s product tampering.
A Colorado artist who replaced the labels of in-store Gatorade bottles with those of his own creation featuring Tiger Woods was sentenced to two years of probation and a $1,000 fine.
According to the Colorado U.S. Attorney's Office and the Food & Drug Administration, Jason Eric Kay, 38, bought Gatorade on at least 11 occasions from Safeway and King Soopers stores.
He took the drinks home, removed the labels, and replaced them with images he made of the golfer and his wife Elin Woods and the word “Unfaithful.” He then took the products back to the stores and replaced them on the shelves for sale.
But to the FDA, the real crime seems to be that he mixed up the flavors in the process.
“Kay made labels for Gatorade A.M. Tropical-Mango flavored products, but placed the labels on bottles that were not Gatorade A.M. Tropical-Mango flavored products, but were, in fact, Gatorade Thirst Quencher Orange flavor,” according to the government‘s press release.
“Additionally, the Gatorade A.M. labels that the defendant placed on the bottles of Gatorade Thirst Quencher Orange represented that the product contained Vitamin C, when, in fact, Gatorade Thirst Quencher Orange does not contain Vitamin C.”
In February, Kay pleaded guilty to the adulteration and removal of a label of food while held for sale, a misdemeanor. He was sentenced on May 3.
In a statement, Colorado U.S. Attorney David Gaouette said, “The prosecution should serve as a warning to others contemplating similar crimes to promote themselves not to do so at the expense of the public or the public’s health.”