Four arrested in İzmir bootleg alcohol raids

Four arrested in İzmir bootleg alcohol raids

İZMİR – Anadolu Agency
Four arrested in İzmir bootleg alcohol raids

Police increase inspections on shops selling alcoholic beverages after bootleg alcohol kills eight in İzmir. DHA Photo

İzmir police have arrested four people for their involvement in the production and sale of bootlegged alcohol after eight people were killed and dozens more were hospitalized in the western province. 

Z.G., 44, E.Ö., 23, Ç.M.F., 39, and O.Y., 23, were arrested by a court while nine others were released pending trial without arrest. 

Police seized 104 liters of bootlegged rakı, as well as many bottles used in the sale of the alcohol in operations in the province’s Konak, Karabağlar, Urla and Buca districts. 

Thirteen people are still in intensive care in the city after drinking the fake alcohol.

The eight people who have died so far from the counterfeit rakı in İzmir are Seçgin Dengiz, Ali Ulutürk, Alem Pena Çandar, Ömer Akgün Yüngeliş, Özkan Yaman, Köksal Çetin, Birol Bacaklı and Cesur Artan.

Artan, 53, was on trial on charges of “causing the death” of another victim at the time of his death, after he gave one of his friends a counterfeit version of rakı, an anise-based alcoholic drink popular in Turkey.

Dengiz, 49, was the latest victim to die in the bootlegged alcohol scandal in İzmir and was being treated at the Katip Çelebi University Medical School Hospital before his death. His body has been taken to the İzmir Forensic Institute for medical examination.

The latest deaths come less than a week after a couple running a market were arrested in İzmir on accusations of selling counterfeit rakı. Police also seized four liters of bootlegged rakı from the market at the time of the couple’s detention. 

A number of deaths have also occurred in Istanbul in recent months as a result of bootlegged alcohol.