Kyrgyz Officials Shut Down Alcohol-Smuggling Pipeline : The Two-Way The conduit with neighboring Kazakhstan was reportedly used to send "thousands of liters" of pure grain alcohol undetected across the border.
NPR logo Kyrgyz Officials Shut Down Alcohol-Smuggling Pipeline

Kyrgyz Officials Shut Down Alcohol-Smuggling Pipeline

A new pipeline between the Central Asian republics of Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan was until recently pumping away. Not oil, though — moonshine.

Customs and border officials in Kyrgyzstan uncovered the "makeshift underwater pipeline" on the bed of the Chu River, which divides the two countries. Officials think smugglers have sent thousands of liters of grain alcohol through the conduit from Kazakhstan.

The BBC writes:

"It is unclear how officials made the discovery, but a search is now on for the smugglers behind the pipeline.

"Local media has reported that the pipeline was found just a few kilometres from a border checkpoint.

"Correspondents say that Kazakhstan is one of the biggest grain producers in Central Asia and spirits are far cheaper there than in neighbouring countries."