A pizza delivery boy faces 18 years in jail after he was caught on camera apparently spitting on a customer's food in Turkey.
CCTV footage shows the 18-year-old, named as Burak S, opening up a pizza box outside a customer's home and leaning over it as he filmed himself on his phone.
The boy then walked up to customer Huseyin Alyuz's fifth-floor flat, in the city of Eskisehir in north-west Turkey, to deliver the meal.
Mr Alyuz's nephew, Cagatay Ehe, saw the CCTV footage and told his uncle who complained to the police and the pizza company.
Burak S. said he was only checking the pizza for damage but has been sacked and is now on trial.
He is charged with 'endangering the lives of persons by putting poison or spoiling the food with other means' which carries a sentence of two to 15 years in prison.
He also faces a consumer court charge of 'damaging goods and endangering customer's health' which carries a sentence of between four months and three years behind bars.
Burak S. told the court that he did not spit on the pizza and had only opened the box to ensure it was not damaged as he had been in an accident en route.
He said: 'I found out that the person who ordered the pizza had cursed my colleague Aylin. I knew he was a problem customer.
'I opened the box of the pizza to check for any problems, to check whether the pizza was still intact.
'I took a picture of the pizza with my mobile phone and sent it to my friend Aylin. I absolutely did not spit when I opened the box.'
Mr Alyuz told the court: 'I called the pizza shop and ordered a pizza. It was a two-minute conversation and I did not curse anybody.
'The suspect delivered the pizza to me. I opened the box and took two slices of pizza. Cagatay Efe who lives in the same building, send me a text message saying 'do not eat the pizza'.
'I called Cagatay, he told me the delivery boy had spat on the pizza. When I checked the security camera footage I realised the suspect had spat on my pizza.'
The criminal court has adjourned the case until next February while forensic experts assess the risk of disease from the pizza. The consumer court case is still pending.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
© Associated Newspapers Ltd.