Counterfeit vodka shipment intercepted in Russia

Poisonous vodkaPolice in Russia seized 30,000 half-litre bottles of counterfeit Pshenichnaya vodka with an estimated value of $90,000 earlier this year, according to the RIA Novosti news agency.

The bottles were intercepted during a routine stop of a truck in Chita, eastern Siberia. The owner of the shipment was arrested in March while trying to bribe police to release the fake bottles, which bore fake tax stamps.

Counterfeit alcohol is a major problem in Russia and accounts for 23-37 per cent of total sales in the market, says RIA Novosti, with more than 300,000 lirtes seized by the authorities in 2011. Last year 12,000 people in Russia died from drinking counterfeit alcohol, down from 45,000 cases in 2005.

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