Saudi authorities have busted an underground liquor factory run by Indian nationals, arresting two men and seizing huge quantities of liquor and equipment used for packaging, a media report said.
The alcohol was smuggled in from a neighbouring country and then packaged at the factory, the Saudi Gazette said. "Inspectors from the department foiled attempts to mix liquor with Dettol to change its colour and con customers into thinking it was foreign liquor," said Spokesman of Anti-Drug Department in the Eastern Province, Col Salman Al-Nashwan.
The Indian nationals, however, were not identified. Large numbers of Dettol bottles were seized from the distillery, the report said. Officials seized 1,956 bottles and 264 cans of spirits ready for sale, in addition to 3,504 bottles and two huge tanks of liquor, each with a capacity of 1,000 liters, prepared for packaging.
There were also another 10 empty tanks for stocking and equipment for packaging. The inspectors also seized 204,000 Saudi riyals in cash from the house of the Indian national who ran the distillery. Al-Nashwan said his team maintained round the clock surveillance on a warehouse after receiving a tip-off and when one of the suspects arrived at the scene, the officers detained him.
He confessed to transporting liquor in cans from a neighbouring country prior to packaging and selling it as foreign liquor. Large quantities of stickers of foreign liquor brands were recovered from the pickup vehicle used by the suspect, he said.