Cancun, Q.R. — The US Department of State says they are reviewing 17 cases of citizens who say they became ill due to the consumption of adulterated alcohol during their vacations in tourist destinations in Mexico. However Mexico says that from inspections in 2017, no adulterated alcohol was found.
State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert responded to a question about a letter from Democratic Senator Tammy Baldwin to Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, in which he asks to “do more” about this problem estimating about 140 cases, however Nauert says the number is 17.
According to Tillerson, about 140 is the number of Americans who have been victims of robbery or assaults after fainting due to ingesting adulterated alcohol in beach hotels in Cancun, Los Cabos and Puerto Vallarta.
“We are reviewing that letter and we will respond appropriately. We have 17 reports of individuals who have shared their concerns that they may have suffered from contaminated or unregulated alcohol. It has 17,” indicated Nauert.
The US is reviewing the 17 cases of victims who allegedly drank adulterated alcohol on tourist beaches in Mexico. It says those affected would have been victims of robbery or assaults after fainting because they ingested, unknowingly, adulterated alcohol on the beaches of Cancún, Los Cabos and Puerto Vallarta.
The State Department spokeswoman warned that they will not be able to prosecute anyone because it did not happen in the US, but at least they are monitoring the reports.
She recalled that this is a topic that has been talked about since the last spring break when the Tillerson office began receiving reports of Americans allegedly affected by adulterated alcohol in Mexico, a very popular destination for student trips at that time of year.
“We can not process it because it’s not our country. Yhat’s the decision of the Mexican government, but at least we can monitor some of the reports,” Nauert said. “This is of great concern to the US government.”
However, the Secretary of Tourism of Quintana Roo, Marisol Vanegas, said that the state has received no complaints. In addition, he added that the region receives 11 million tourists a year in more than 98,000 hotel rooms and adheres to strict quality measures.
Among the operations carried out by the Federal Consumer Protection Agency (Profeco) during 2017, no adulterated alcohol was detected in Cancun, only a breach of Mexican official norms, said Gamaliel Canto Cambranis regarding Heather Nauert’s statement.
The official stated that more than 33 bottles of tequila were immobilized because his registration was not found.
“Also, I would like to emphasize that there are normally three special alcohol operations, but in 2017, four were activated in the case of the Riviera Maya,” he added.
“In 2017, three alcohol and one special operations were applied. They reviewed 1,300 bottles of alcohol in the hotel zone and destroyed eight bottles for non-compliance in the labeling, and immobilized more than 33 bottles of tequila because their registration was not before the regulatory board of tequila,” he explained.