Irish authorities seize counterfeit alcohol worth €460k

Irish authorities in County Louth seized €460,000 worth of counterfeit spirits after finding a large-scale plant for processing denatured industrial alcohol.

Image: Revenue

Revenue officers, supported by the Garda Armed Support Unit from Dundalk, conducted a farm raid in County Louth when they made the discovery.

According to the authorities, the plant was set up as a production line with the alcohol seized having gone through different stages of the process. Officers found 586 litres of finished vodka-type spirits that had already been bottled, sealed, labelled and boxed. In addition, they discovered 4,000 litres of raw alcohol which they estimate would produce around 12,000 litres of vodka-type spirits.

Together with the alcohol, officers removed all of the processing equipment including the production line apparatus, mixing tank, and containers, together with packaging, bottle caps and labels – all of which were counterfeit.

Also found at the plant was a forklift truck containing cash amounting to €5,000 and £1,000. Authorities estimate that the retail value of the alcohol found at the plant is around €460,000 which represents a potential loss of around €300,000 to the Exchequer.

Revenue officers revealed that a man has been questioned in connection with the counterfeit alcohol and “investigations are ongoing with a view to prosecution”.

Revenue issued a public warning stating that businesses and consumers should only buy alcohol from reputable sources.

It added: “Vodka is the most commonly counterfeited alcohol and often contains high quantities of methanol, a poisonous chemical that can cause breathing difficulties, liver damage or blindness; and isopropyl alcohol, a chemical solvent commonly found in nail varnish remover”.

Anyone with any information regarding this case or the smuggling and/or sale of counterfeit alcohol in general is encouraged to call Revenue in confidence on 1800 295 295.

One Response to “Irish authorities seize counterfeit alcohol worth €460k”

  1. Most disturbing here is the use of denatured industrial alcohol. Which is alcohol with an added substance that makes it unfit for human consumption. For example: alcohol used in 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. Please report and provide tips for these operations as well as any retail liquor violations to http://www.SafeProof.org

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