ATO warns, “A licence is required to make spirits, even if it is intended only for personal use.”

On Thursday 11 April, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) executed search warrants at an address in Riverglades, South Australia, as part of an illegal alcohol excise investigation.

Following information provided to Crime Stoppers, the ATO worked in conjunction with the South Australian Police Licencing Enforcement Branch to uncover the extent of the operation.

Investigators uncovered equipment and ingredients used in the manufacturing of illicit alcohol along with 21 bottles of suspected illicit alcohol.

ATO Assistant Commissioner Peter Vujanic said this seizure demonstrates the ATO’s commitment to detect and disrupt the illicit alcohol trade.

“Excise licences are only granted where appropriate under the Excise Act, which includes needing to have appropriate experience, equipment and premises.”

“Illegally distilled spirits can pose a health risk and even be fatal in some cases. This is due to the volatility of the distillation process and the possible toxicity of improperly produced alcohol.

“Although beer and wine can be made legally at home for personal consumption, a licence is required to make spirits, even if it is intended only for personal use.”

Mr Vujanic also said that as this case shows how the wider community has an important role to play in helping to stamp out the illegal alcohol trade.

“If you have any knowledge or concerns about someone doing distilling spirits illegally, you should report it to the ATO on 1800 060 062 or your local police station,” Mr Vujanic said.

As this operation is still ongoing, no further comment can be made at this time.

Categories: GENERAL News

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