A Belgian man was acquitted of being drunk because his body naturally produces alcohol

A Belgian man was acquitted of being drunk because his body naturally produces alcohol

Alcoholic “self-fermentation” syndrome causes the digestive system to produce endogenous ethanol while eating carbohydrate-rich foods.

A 40-year-old Belgian, who was tried before the police court in Bruges (North) on charges of repeated driving under the influence of alcohol, was released on Monday, April 22, after he was able to prove that he suffers from a very rare syndrome of alcoholic “self-fermentation.” . His lawyer, Anse Ghesquière, confirmed the information provided by the Belgian media.

Known as “spontaneous fermentation” or “spontaneous brewery,” this syndrome involves the production of ethanol internally by the digestive system while eating foods high in carbohydrates, such as bread, potatoes, or beans.

“Force majeure”

According to the lawyer, scientists believe that the disease is underdiagnosed worldwide as only about twenty people are officially infected with it.

She confirmed that her client, whose identity was not identified, was able to prove that he was a carrier of the disease after involving three doctors in total in this legal procedure. The court recognized the “situation of force majeure”.

Mai Anse Ghesquière commented, saying: “We are happy with this ruling, but it is not final yet,” explaining that the prosecution has thirty days to appeal.

Already convicted

While driving his car, the man was tested in April 2022 with a level of 0.91mg per liter of exhaled air, and then again a month later with 0.71mg/L, with the legal maximum in Belgium being 0.22mg/L.

The car driver, who had previously been sentenced in 2019 to a fine and suspension of his driving license for the same reasons, had maintained his innocence, stressing that he had not drunk alcohol and was apparently unaware of the disease he was suffering from.

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From now on, a low-carbohydrate diet is able to prevent the onset of the syndrome. During the hearing at the end of March, the prosecution also demanded that he avoid “any voluntary consumption of alcohol,” Flemish public television channel VRT reported.

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