Last month, Kay came up with the idea of relabeling Gatorade bottles with photos of golfer Tiger Woods and his wife alongside the word "Unfaithful" and then placing them on grocery store shelves -- a stunt that went global after Channel 9 covered it. Unfortunately for Kay, this gag apparently broke a number of food laws -- and despite his claim in an e-mailed promotional pitch to Pepsi, Gatorade's parent company, that his shtick was "good for Gatorade and good for art," the feds subsequently smacked him with a potpourri of criminal counts.
Now, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office, Kay is being given the "opportunity" to plead guilty to misdemeanor charges tomorrow morning, with prescribed penalties of not more than a year in jail and a fine that maxes out at $1,000 -- a stiff price for a joke the authorities clearly didn't find amusing. Look below to check out the U.S. Attorney's Office release, the aforementioned e-mail to Pepsi and a 9News story about the investigation.
U.S. Attorney's Office release:
JASON KAY SCHEDULED TO PLEAD GUILTY TO MISDEMEANOR CHARGES
Jason Kay, age 38, of Longmont, Colorado, is scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court in Denver before U.S. Magistrate Judge Kristen L. Mix on Friday, February 19, 2010, at 10:00 a.m. where he will be given an opportunity to plead guilty. Kay was charged by Information on February 9, 2010 with one count of adulteration and removal of the labeling of a food while held for sale. If convicted, he faces not more than 1 year in federal prison, and a fine of up to $1,000. Kay allegedly removed and replaced product labels on bottles of Gatorade on store shelves in the North Metro Denver area. Kay is presently free on bond.
E-mail to Pepsi:
I represent the artist doing the "UNFAITHFUL" pop art label in the Greater Denver Area. He's been buying the 1 QT Tropical Mango, replacing the label with his art label and then re-merchandising them in stores here for less than a week. In this short time several people have contacted me and the story has even made the local news. We're creating quite a buzz! People are making contact trying to buy directly from the artist but he is not interested in selling directly to individual collector.
The entire production is performance art at its finest!
The artist's personal aim is to get his work out into the public in a unique way and hopefully get people thinking and talking. The artist is interested in continuing to generate this buzz anonymously. Gatorade can participate unofficially (while denying this connection) by providing support to the artist for travel and per diem in various cities. Your product will sell and generate more demand for Gatorade. Two days are needed in each target city. Cities may be chosen by Gatorade to boost sales. This is the cheapest marketing campaign you could ever participate in. It is good for Gatorade and good for art.
As an example, the artist will wear a Gatorade t-shirt and act like a Gatorade employee. He will exchange 24 of his labeled bottles for 24 on the store's shelf. He will relabel those and do it again at the next store.
I assure you that the contents of each bottle remain safe and sealed and ready for consumption (or collecting) by the final consumer.
Contact me via this email address or call 303-709-____
Thank you for your time,