An elderly German man fed up with local children pilfering his Easter decorations has been accused of poisoning a 10-year-old boy with a spiked chocolate bunny.

Each year 68-year-old Joerg-Werner Lubbe from the town of Markneukirchen, in southeastern Germany, decks out his yard with tasty Easter treats. And every time, the decorations prove irresistible to children in the neighbourhood, who help themselves.

Determined that this year would be different, the Easter scrooge allegedly laced a batch of chocolate bunnies with ammonium hydroxide and hung them from a tree in his front yard. A sweet-toothed 10-year-old fell for the trap and gobbled down a baited bunny. He was violently ill and had to be rushed to the hospital.

Police said they were investigating Lubbe for grievous bodily harm and said they found six more poisoned bunnies in the yard. They said adults would have immediately noticed the smell of the chemical, but a hungry child may have been unable to resist the lure of chocolate.

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