JOHOR BARU: Four men have died while another became blind after consuming illicit samsu (bootleg alcohol) here last night.
Johor police chief Datuk Mohd Khalil Kader Mohd said that those who died were a local and three foreigners. from Nepal, India and Pakistan.
The victim who became blind was also a local. The men were in their 30s.
“Initial investigations found that they had consumed ‘Miludeer’ a methanol-tainted alcoholic drink that was purchased locally,“ he told a press conference at the Johor Police headquarters here today.
Mohd Khalil said the post-mortem on all victims would be conducted by the hospital authorities to determine the cause of death and that samples of the alcoholic beverage would be sent to the Chemistry Department to verify its contents.
Mohd Khalil said Johor police then conducted “Ops Samsu” and detained nine individuals and identified several premises selling the illicit drink.
The nine men, four locals and five Indonesians aged between 25 and 44 were nabbed at in Johor Baru South, Seri Alam and Kulai, he said, adding that a number of alcohol bottles and cans were seized, which were believed to have been smuggled in without paying customs duties.
He said investigations were also being carried out to identify whether the case in Johor had any links with the six deaths in Penang yesterday. The men were believed to have consumed liquor that was illegally processed at home.
Mohd Khalil urged those with information on the sale of such alcoholic drinks to contact the nearest police station. — Bernama