Fake drinking water factory uncovered in Indonesia

INDONESIA - An illegal factory producing fake "Aqua" drinking water gallons was uncovered in Bantul regency, Yogyakarta, after operating for two years.

Bantul Police chief Adj. Sr. Comr. Surawan said that the water in the gallon jugs was taken directly from a well without undergoing any treatment process.

"This [practice] is endangering human health," Surawan said on Tuesday, adding that traces of solder could be easily found in such fake products that normally had no expiry date.

The syndicate, according to Surawan, had a neat work flow. Some were tasked with filling gallon jugs with well water, some with putting on caps, some with soldering the cap and others with distributing the end product.

Surawan also said that seven suspects had been arrested in the case during a police raid held in Balong village, Potorono, Banguntapan, Bantul.

Among the suspects was Agung Wicaksono, the owner of the well and the building where the water was being filled. He is also considered the mastermind of the operation.

The police also seized hundreds of gallon jugs, soldering equipment, four motorcycles, a car and a pump machine.

During the questioning, Agung admitted that he was guilty and that he had done it for the money.

He said he used to be a legal Aqua drinking water seller but the profit margin was too small. It was from his experience working for Aqua that he learned how to produce imitations.