At least 38 people were killed after they consumed a batch of spurious alcohol circulating across Ukraine, the State Service for Food Safety and Consumer Protection said on Friday. Citing a statement from the agency, Xinhua reported that 39 other people are still being treated in hospitals and many of them are in critical condition.
“Several people, who survived the poisoning, became blind. I do not rule out that the number of victims may increase further,” Vladimir Lapa, the head of the State Service for Food Safety and Consumer Protection, was quoted as saying.
Poisoning cases began appearing in Ukraine last week, when dozens of people appealed for medical assistance in the eastern Kharkov region due to symptoms of intoxication after drinking alcohol. This week, the new cases of poisoning were registered among the residents of four other regions and eastern, southern and northern Ukraine.
Four people have been so far arrested in Kharkov region for allegedly producing and distributing the batch of spurious liquor. The local police confiscated nearly four tonnes of methyl alcohol and technical equipment for producing the toxic drinks from them.