30/01/2012

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Duration: 29 minutes

Inside Out tracks the secret world of the vodka bootlegger and the dangers involved with the sale of illegal alcohol in the Midlands.

Mary Rhodes meets with some determined protestors at Birmingham University to investigate how the government may end up spending more money since the announcements about student fee changes were made.

And Alastair McKee reveals an ambitious project to restore a canal through the Cotswolds.

  • 'Fake vodka could have blinded me'

    'Fake vodka could have blinded me'

    In November, Sheffield University student Lauren Platts bought a cheap bottle of what she thought was vodka, for £5.99.

    She says the man in the off-licence jokingly said 'It will blind you'. Miss Platts said she laughed at the time but now she thinks he was not far wrong.

    After drinking about a third of a bottle mixed with lemonade she spent the next two days unable to get out of bed.

    After speaking to Trading Standards officers, she now knows it was not vodka at all.

    Read the full story on the BBC News website below.

    BBC News: 'Fake vodka could have blinded me'
  • Video feature: Fake vodka 'almost blinded' 21-year-old student

    Video feature: Fake vodka 'almost blinded' 21-year-old student

    Sarah Sturdey goes on the trail of the people producing illegal alcohol and finds out the sometimes dire consequences for those who drink it.

    In 2011 student Lauren Platts, who is studying at Sheffield University, bought a cheap bottle of what she thought was vodka.

    After drinking about a third of a bottle mixed with lemonade she spent the next two days unable to get out of bed.

    She tells BBC Inside Out how her eyesight was badly damaged by drinking the fake vodka which she bought from an off-licence.

    A consultant at Lincoln County Hospital, Vikas Sodiwala, said that other patients have been turning up at casualty departments showing similar symptoms to Miss Platts'.

    Watch the video feature on the BBC News website below.

    BBC News: Fake vodka 'almost blinded' 21-year-old student

Credits

Presenter
Mary Rhodes
Participant
Alastair McKee

Broadcasts

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