Authorities in Armenia on Tuesday were racing to find all the people who purchased a deadly “homemade vodka,” which according to Armenia’s Health Ministry has killed 11 people, mainly in the Armavir region of Armenia.
Health Ministry spokesperson Alina Nikoghosyan said that 23 cases of alcohol poisoning were reported from Monday and Tuesday, announcing the 11 fatalities.
Nikoghosyan said that 17 cases were reported in Armarvir, of which eight had died.
“All of them consumed homemade vodka bought from the same source,” she said. “The remaining six cases happened in Yerevan, three of which had a fatal outcome. All victims consumed medical-grade alcohol (methanol),” Nikoghosyan said adding that three people were hospitalized and are in critical condition.
Law enforcement authorities have arrested 50-year-old Ashot Hovsepyan on Tuesday on suspicion of illegally producing and selling the product. The unsold batch of the bootleg drinks was confiscated.
Authorities said that some eight gallons of the beverage, which has been sold, is still in circulation, with health officials in a frenzy to identify and notify those who purchases and might consume the deadly drink.