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Poitín Stil Discovered In North Tipperary

Humors of Whiskey
“What’ll make the lame walk, what will make the dumb talk, the elixir of life and philospher’s stone,
And what helped Mr. Brunel to build the Thames Tunnel; wasn’t it poteen from ould Inishowen
So stick to the cratur’ the best thing in nature for sinking your sorrows and raising your joys.
Oh Lord, it’s no wonder, if lightning and thunder weren’t made from the plunder of poteen me boys.”

An active Poitín Stil was discovered by Revenue Customs officials in North Tipperary on Monday last.

It is understood that the illicit still was uncovered at an as yet unnamed rural location, close to the town of Nenagh, during a joint intelligence led operation undertaken by the Revenue Customs Service and an Garda Síochána.

The distillation process is understood to have been in full operation at the time of the raid and a quantity of distilled Poitín was also seized. All related distilling equipment was seized during the operation and a file is now being prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

Traditional illegal Irish distilled Poitín can vary anywhere between 40%–90% alcohol by volume (ABV) and is fondly know by many other names e.g. ‘Mountain Dew’, ‘Holy Water’, ‘Drop of the Cratur’, ‘Moonshine’, ‘Red Biddy’ and ‘White Lightening’.  Irish monastic settlements were originally the birthplace of distilling here in Ireland, with earliest records going back to 584AD. Here Irish monks were the Master Distillers of their time, strictly retaining their distilling knowledge within the walls of their respective monasteries.

The word Poitín comes from the Gaelic word “pota” meaning a pot, which refers to the small copper pot still used by Poitín distillers. Illegal Poitín, also called Poteen or Potcheen is still traditionally produced in remote rural areas of Ireland today, distilled from malted barley, grain, treacle, sugar beet, or potatoes.

It is interesting to note that Poitín distilled legally is one of a small number of Irish food and Drink products which have been granted ‘Geographical Indicative Status’ by the European Union Council (EU). This means that similar to Champagne, which originates from the Champagne region of France and Parmesan Cheese, which originates from Parma, Italy, Poitín’s ‘Indicative Status’ is akin only to Ireland.

There are presently several legal Craft Distillery companies in Ireland now producing Poitín, which can be bought in pubs and off-licences.  These Craft Distillers today produce Poitín in various flavours, achieved through the use of wild berries and fruit, thus carrying on the original tradition, which years ago would have been also often flavoured using hedgerow berries, so as to soften and sweeten this products natural rather harsh taste.

Of course traditional illegally Poitín was distilled over a turf fire prior to the introduction of bottled gas. Illegal stills could be easily detected by police, identifying the rising smoke, despite the illegal distillers choice of windy and broken weather conditions which assisted in dispersing this tell-tale smoke. Certain wooded areas also assisted in the cover-up, with dense foliage often assisting in the wider spreading of this curling smoke trail.

Irish myth and legend state that St Patrick, our Irish patron Saint, brewed up the first ever batch when wine ran short for Mass; which possibly accounts for one of Poitín’s other names, that of “Holy Water”.

Beware Of Unsolicited IT Scam Phone Calls

scamalertThurles and its environs are once again being targeted, over the past week, by ‘Computer Phone Scammers.’

Numerous local people have reported receiving phone calls this week, originating from unscrupulous individuals, latter claiming to be employees of “Microsoft Support” and informing you that your computer has become infected by a virus.

If you do receive such a call, DO NOT SWITCH ON YOUR COMPUTER – DO NOT ENTER LINKS or OTHER CODE, which you most certainly will be requested to do by these cyber criminals.

These unsolicited telephone calls, which are always an attempted criminal act, could end up costing you a great deal of money should you decide to co-operate in any way with their requests.  Their activity can involve infecting your PC/Laptop, stealing Passwords or totally locking you out your equipment, the latter before then requesting you to pay a small ransom to be allowed to access your equipment once again.

The international “00201” prefix of the telephone number, being used to contact computer owners, suggests that these IT criminal calls are originating in African countries. In some cases your personal private number, when initially contacted, is terminated by these initial scam artist, thus inviting you to phone back an unknown number at your considerable expense.

Remember, when in doubt simply hang up your phone. Just be vigilant and do inform your friends via your social media, to ensure all are made fully aware.

Attempted Armed Raid In Drangan Tipperary

gardaGardaí from the Clonmel area of Co Tipperary are today searching for at least two individuals who were involved in an attempted armed robbery yesterday in the south east of the county.

The attempted armed robbery took place at Slattery’s Garage on the Main Street of Drangan at around 7.30pm last night, (6th, March, 2015).

The individuals who wore balaclavas and were armed with a shotgun, threatened staff and demanded cash; however no one was injured and no cash was stolen. Staff were left very shaken following this incident.

The suspects quickly fled from the crime scene in a motor vehicle, turning in the direction of O’Connor’s public house and down the Newtown Road in the general direction of Glengarrig.

Both individuals are believed to be male and described as being about 5 feet-10 inches tall, wearing dark clothing and possibly aged in their early to mid 20s.

Clonmel Gardaí are appealing for anyone who may have seen anything or noticed any unusual or suspicious behaviour to contact them at Tel No: 052-6177640 or on the Garda Confidential Line Tel: 1800 666 111.

WARNING – Fraud – Business Invoice Redirection Alert

garda crestThe Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation has recently detected a pattern of criminal activity that has the potential to cause serious financial losses to Public / Private Businesses. Up to 14 such cases have been reported to date, with potential losses of over €5m and with €100k stolen to date.

A number of businesses based around Ireland have received fraudulent instructions in recent weeks via both Email and postal correspondence instructing them to record new account details for their various clients. There is no pattern in these fraudulent account details but they do involve most financial institutions in both Ireland and the UK.

As a result of various businesses having already received these fraudulent instructions, some businesses contacted have transferred funding to various bank accounts as instructed to do so, in payment of due debts. However due to the vigilance of the various financial institutions, most of the money has been prevented from being sent in the first instance or has been indeed recovered.

Conduct an immediate review of recent business requests for changes of account details.

The Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation now request that all businesses conduct an immediate review of any instructions that they have received from customers which involved a request for any change of account requests / details. As a security precaution such requests should be confirmed by verbal contact with the relevant financial control person employed in each business that purportedly sent change of account instructions as to whether they should be regarded as genuine instructions or not.

Where any business suspects that such an attempt has been made or indeed where they have received any such request; they should immediately contact their local Garda station and their personal financial institution.

The Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation are presently liaising closely with the Banking and Payments Federation of Ireland on this matter.

NOTE: Please see attached crime prevention advice supplied here (pdf) on the “Invoice Redirection Fraud Alert Advice Sheet” provided by the Garda Bureau of Fraud Investigation.

Major Drugs Seizure In North Tipperary

gardaGardaí from the Co Tipperary Division conducted searches at four premises in the Roscrea area of County Tipperary yesterday (February 12th 2015).

During these searches a quantity of Cocaine was recovered with an estimated street value in excess of €40,000.

During the searches four men, aged in their early 20’s were arrested and detained under Section 2 of the Drug Trafficking Criminal Justice Act 1996. The four arrested were detained at Roscrea, Nenagh, Thurles and Templemore Garda Stations.

Three of those arrested have since been released and a file will now be prepared for the information of the Director of Public Prosecutions. One man continues to remains in custody at Templemore.

The searches were carried out as part of ‘Operation Overwatch’, which was set up to target persons involved in the distribution of controlled drugs in the Roscrea and wider area.

Newly appointed Garda Inspector Mr Oliver Henry praised the help given by the local Roscrea community and the ‘Roscrea Stands Up’ group for the success of this operation.

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