Iranian cops are hunting crooks who tried to disguise water as wine by filling a well with illegal booze which could see them executed if they are caught and found to be repeat offenders.
In the strict Islamic country, alcohol is forbidden for Muslims who face 80 lashes and a fine if caught drinking, and if they repeat the offence they face the death penalty.
On this occasion, the wine was discovered hidden in the water well by authorities after getting a tip-off, although those who put it there have not yet been found.
The water well that had become a ‘wine well’ was located in a village near the city of Khorramabad in the Iranian province of Lorestanand on 14 July.
Iranian TV broadcast footage of the police removing the wine from the well with a water pump as a warning to others not to repeat the stunt, and confirmed that they were hunting those responsible.
Reports added however that no arrests have been made yet.
The Iranian police regularly announce the discovery of alcohol-related swoops in the ultraconservative Islamic republic.
Locally produced spirits and wines, as well as smuggled foreign brands, are often traded on the black market, according to local media.
In Iran, despite the tough punishments for Muslim citizens including death for repeat offenders, Christian minorities, Jews and Zoroastrians are allowed to drink alcohol in non-public places.