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Folklore: Sun Sets on Irish Moonshiners

By Steven McCaffery, The Irish News

November 8, 1999

POTEEN producers have been hit hard in a pre-Christmas crackdown. More than 200 gallons of illegal poteen were seized in an anti-moonshine operation centred on two locations in Co Monaghan yesterday.

Most of the drink was found, together with a still, in a house near the village of Cullaville.

At a second building, near Carrickmacross, more poteen was uncovered.

Gardai also discovered 240 gallons of "wash", alcohol still to be converted to the final poteen product.

Detectives held two men for questioning and later said a file would be submitted to the Director of Public Prosecutions.

A Garda source said the move was regarded as a key development in efforts to halt supplies of poteen set for sale on both sides of the border ahead of the traditional Christmas trade.

Officials have also warned of possible risk to health from drinking illegally brewed alcohol. Gardai found dead rats in one still earlier this year.