Ex-Worker Gets Prison for Sausage Tampering

He allegedly placed a wire connector in a sausage link.

With headquarters in Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin, Johnsonville has approximately 1,600 employees that manufacture an array of sausage-based products, condiments and accessories. The company also has a number of contract workers provided by staffing companies.

One former contract worker, 28-year-old Jonathan Tilman Lane has been sentenced to more than four years in federal prison after he was convicted of tampering with the company's product while working on the food line.

On March 25, 2018, Lane allegedly put a cigarette paper in a sausage link. Three days later, on March 28, 2018, he placed a wire connector into sausages on the processing line.

In an odd twist, Lane actually turned himself in. Trying to play the hero, he reported the contamination to a supervisor who then shut down the line. Lane must not have considered the company's in-house security systems as security camera footage caught him in the act.

According to the company, the products didn't make it out of the factory, however Lane has to pay about $42,000 to cover the product that needed to be quarantined and discarded. He was facing 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for each count of tampering with a consumer product.

At the time of the incident, United States Attorney Matthew Krueger commended Johnsonville for “its security measures and quick action to prevent any harm to consumers”.