Tequila, rum drinks hide lethal punch

Rum and tequila drinkers may be risking their health the next time they sip their favorite alcoholic beverages at a bar, after government tests indicated that 100 percent of the two spirits served at inspected nightspots was adulterated. Tests conducted by the state’s chemical laboratory on 39 restaurants and bars in the Attica region in the first few days of July showed that all samples of rum and tequila drinks had been diluted with other ingredients. About half of the vodka samples turned out to be something other than purely the spirit in question. Whiskey appears to be the safest bet; only 20 percent of this liquor showed evidence of tampering. Adulterated drinks pose a danger to consumers as they can cause splitting headaches, permanent blindness or, in extreme cases, even death. The state laboratory conducted the tests in cooperation with members of the now-defunct financial crimes squad, SDOE. The checks also found that two-thirds of bars had committed some sort of tax infringement, usually in the form of failing to issue receipts.

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