QUITO – Police in Ecuador arrested a man suspected of having made the methanol-laced liquor that caused the deaths of three-dozen people, an Interior Ministry official told Efe.
Since July 14 in Ecuador, 36 people have died of poisoning after drinking alcohol adulterated with methanol.
The arrest took place Sunday in Ambato, a city in the central highland province of Tungurahua.
Health Minister David Chiriboga on Sunday told a press conference that tainted wine and liquor were sold under brand names such as Tentador, Lima Limero, Lima Limon, Papelito and San Francisco.
These liquors are available in stores and are sold in bottles or Tetra Brik. However, Chiriboga said, “their health registration numbers are fake. People should not drink these liquors.”
For that reason, Chiriboga asked liquor stores to voluntarily hand over these products to the police or the Health Ministry, and warned that if they didn’t, they “could be penalized.”
The poisoning began in the southwestern province of Los Rios, where 20 people died.
But little by little it spread and cases have been reported in 16 of Ecuador’s 24 provinces. EFE