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CCF Continues Investigation of 10 Deaths in Ratanakiri

RATANAKIRI: Authorities at the Consumer Protection Competition and Fraud Repression (CCF) Ratanakiri branch are continuing to investigate the methanol content in wine products sold and distributed in the province following the deaths of ten people last month.

The General Department of the CCF sent laboratory experts to Ratanakiri on June 30 to cooperate with the relevant institutions and local authorities to investigate what caused ten men to die in quick succession in mid-June.

The CCF said that 86 samples had been collected and were being analysed for methanol content. So far, they have found four out of 49 samples contained potentially fatal levels of methanol. The laboratory is also testing wine samples to further confirm the cause of death. Meanwhile, CCF officers are researching, monitoring and collecting wine samples from other districts in the province for further analysis.

Ten people, many of whom worked at the Hang Anh Andong Meas banana farm, died over the course of three weeks in June in Ratanakiri. Authorities are saying the deaths are a result of alcohol poisoning from liquor bought from a nearby seller, rather than pesticide poisoning as initially thought.

The provincial health department conducted an investigation and found out that before dying, the victims were in serious condition for four to six hours and exhibited symptoms of fainting, convulsions, vomiting, fatigue, dizziness, and abdominal pain. They said that the victims regularly drank alcohol and had no history of physical illness.

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