Probe launched in Kaluga Region into adulterated alcohol poisoning of local woman

The Kaluga Region investigating bodies of the Russia’s Investigative Committee have opened a criminal investigation in a crime under paragraph “c” of part 2 of article 238 of the RF Penal Code (production, storage, transportation or selling of unsafe goods or products entailing death of a person) following the death of a 37-year-old woman from the town of Kaluga of acute methyl alcohol poisoning.

According to investigators, on 14 November 2015, the victim drank some liquid from a bottle labeled Lezginka cognac 0.5 liter. The next day she felt unwell and was taken to a hospital, where she died of acute methyl alcohol poisoning.

During investigative and search operations it has been revealed that the adulterated alcohol had been bought in one of houses in Yukhnov District, Kaluga Region. An urgent search was carried out by investigators in the place and they confiscated from there over 500 bottles with alcohol. They also identified owner of the house, it is a local man aged 27, registered as a sole proprietor.

A set of investigative and search operations are underway, chemical tests of the confiscated alcohol are being run and the investigators are now trying to find the place where the alcohol was produced. The investigation is ongoing.

By now poisoning of methyl alcohol resulted from drinking adulterated alcohol has been registered in six federal subjects. And here are the regions where the poisoning resulted in death – Krasnoyarsk Territory, Chuvashia, Orenburg, Kursk, Moscow and Kaluga Regions. Even now there are dozens of victims and we are not sure that the list of regions where more victims of fatal drinks will not get longer. Even despite our numerous appeals to citizens warning them against buying alcohol in shady places or at an evidently too low a price, and moreover from some suspicious dealers, this poison still keeps killing people. To stop this trouble and get rid of the problem we need not one-time measures but systemic tough measures to be taken. These, as we have already said before, include state monopoly on selling and production of alcohol. To all appearance the legislation also needs to be revised. At present article 238 of the Penal Code bears responsibility comparable to the one for reckless homicide. If one person dies, then it is 6 years in prison, more than two gets 10 years. In our opinion, a person producing fatal alcohol realizes general danger of their actions and possible consequences. Moreover, they do it all intentionally, first they produce and then let their product out to the market, so this is why we believe that the punishment for that has to be the one comparable to premeditated murder. We also have to bear in mind that drinking alcohol in Russia is massive. So taking those factors into account we suggest that article 238 should also get one more qualification – committed by adulterating alcohol and have adequate punishment for that.

Head of Media Relations                                                                                                                               V.I. Markin 

01 December 2015 16:21

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