November 30, 2017 – County Louth, Ireland
A Gardai farm raid produced a harvest of fake alcohol on November 29,2017. The Irish Tax and Customs Revenue Division announced in a Press Release the successful conclusion of a joint operation of Revenue Officers and armed Gardai from the town of Dundalk on a farm in County Louth. The combined operational force with search warrant in hand, descended on a typical looking farm in County Louth, known as the “Wee County”, the tiniest county in Ireland.
Instead of a potatoe harvest, police uncovered a large scale assembly line fake alcohol production facility. One man was interviewed on site, no other suspects were arrested as the investigation moves forward. The raiding task force was able to harvest €460,000 of fake alcohol. Officers confiscated 586 liters of bottled fake vodka, along with 4,000 liters of a raw alcohol product waiting to be processed. Along with the packaged and and not packaged fake alcohol police seized all the of the equipment of this farm based assembly line. Along with 5,000 EUR and 1,000 GBP,, the task force also seized the production line equipment, a mixing tank, a forklift, an inventory of empty counterfeit liquor bottles, labels, caps and cartons.
The Revenue Press Release pointed out that this fake alcohol production facility was not a bootleg distillery, but rather an operation that was turning denatured industrial alcohol into fake vodka. Denatured industrial alcohol is alcohol to which a substance has been added that makes it unfit for human consumption, such as that used in the production of industrial cleaners, anti-freeze or windshield washer fluid. The process of turning industrial formulated alcohol into fake vodka, whiskey and other alcoholic beverages is a favorite process for these alcohol counterfeiters throughout the world. In a earlier story this year, Revenue and Customs Officials pointed to truck loads of windshield washer fluid being imported from Portugal by these liquor counterfeiters to produce their fake alcohol.
The 4,000 liters of raw alcohol product harvested by the raiding task force on this Irish Farm could have netted 12,000 bottles of fake alcohol which would have been distributed throughout the region. This industrial alcohol disguised as Vodka, Whiskey, Gin and other authentic alcoholic beverages is a substantial health concern around the world. Consuming dodgy booze, even occasionally can seriously affect the health of the drinker. The consumption of this dodgy booze has led to blindness, nervous disorders, organ failure and death. When this dodgy booze is consumed in quantity by Binge Drinking, death from alcohol toxicity is a real threat.
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