‘Slow Death’, Homemade Alcohol Kills 9 Village People on New Year’s Eve

There “Slow death», Thus the inhabitants of Chivacoa, an agricultural village in the center-west of Venezuela they dubbed the adulterated alcohol that claimed the lives of 9 people during the new year celebrations. Sixteen other people were hospitalized, confirmed the governor of Yaracuy Julio Leon referring to a “alcohol poisoning from a craft product not approved by the health authorities“.

The consumption of such low-cost craft drinks has spread, particularly in working-class neighborhoods in large cities and in villages in the interior of the country affected by an unprecedented economic crisis.

“It started with the loss of his sight”

A few drops of the yellowish liquid remain in bottles perched in the garden of the house… The party with musicians continued late into the night in a house in Pueblo Nuevo. No one suspected then a few hours later, the deaths were going to be linked.

It started on January 1 with the loss of his sight. He was very dizzyrecalls Joselyn Oropeza, a 27-year-old housewife, of her uncle Oswaldo Oviedo, one of the victims. Oviedo was attending the funeral of another deceased when his symptoms worsened, forcing him to go to a health center.

Analysis in progress

The deaths added up throughout the week. “We are going through a painful moment (…), most of the deceased are friends and some brothers too“, regrets Winder Campos, brother of Manuel Campos, returning from the cemetery where he rests.

We don’t know what they really preparedsays Oropeza, butit is very strange that so many people died in such a short time, three days. The origin of the alcohol is not yet known. The police want to find the suppliers, but the person who sold it without control and who brought it to the party also died of its consumption“.

The neighbors are traumatized

Authorities interviewed relatives and visited the house where the party was held. They took samples of the little remaining alcohol to analyze them in the laboratory. A police source told AFP that the alcohol was adulterated with methanol, a substance that can cause blindness, liver damage and ultimately death.

While the investigation into theslow deathprogresses, the neighbors, traumatized meet and discuss on plastic chairs in the street in front of their houses. They talk about the victims. Doris Barico, 56, mourns her older brother Carlos, 57: “He led a very beautiful life, very happy“.

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