Moonshine kills 16 in Indonesia

JAKARTA - Sixteen people died and eight others were hospitalised in Indonesia's East Java province after they drank home-made alcohol during New Year celebrations, police said on Monday.

The victims died over the weekend after consuming Javanese arak at several New Year parties in the town of Mojokerto, said Prisila, a local police officer.

"We suspect the drinks were mixed with other substances," said Prisila, who like many Indonesians goes by one name.

She said police had confiscated dozens of large jugs of the concoction, and were questioning the sellers.

Dozens of Indonesians die every year after consuming home-brewed drinks, often adulterated with a variety of toxic substances to increase their potency, including methyl alcohol and mosquito repellent.

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