Czech Liquor Makers Get Life in Prison for Methanol Poisonings

PRAGUE (AP) — A court has sentenced 10 men up to life in prison for being responsible for a 2012 wave of methanol poisoning in the Czech Republic that killed dozens of people.

The court in the eastern city of Zlin convicted the men Wednesday for endangering public health.

It sentenced the producers of the deadly blend of toxic methanol and drinking alcohol, Rudolf Fian and Tomes Krepela, to life imprisonment.

The main distributor, Jiri Vacula received 15 years behind bars because he cooperated with investigators. Seven others were sentenced to up 21 years in prison for their involvement.

Judge Radomir Koudela said they all had to know the blend was lethal.

Unscrupulous criminal networks sometimes use methanol to produce liquor because it's cheap and impossible for consumers to distinguish from drinking alcohol.