23/08/2007

Police Issue Drugs Warning After Three Deaths

Drug users in south Wales have been warned about a suspected batch of contaminated or high purity drugs after three deaths in the area.

Avon and Somerset Police are investigating the deaths of two men in Bristol on August 17. The first man, believed to be aged in his 40s, was found in Brunswick Square, while the second man was found in Wellington Road nearly two hours later. Police said that both deaths were believed to be connected to drug use.

A third man was also found seriously ill in a flat in Redwood House in Wade Street in the St Judes area of the city on Saturday evening, close to where the two other men were found dead on Friday.

Police said that it is not known whether the man had suffered an overdose or taken a rogue batch of Class A drugs.

The man, believed to be in his 30s, is currently in the Bristol Royal Infirmary in a serious condition.

Gwent Police are also investigating the death of a 49-year-old man at his home in Blackwood on August 18. His death is also believed to be connected to drugs use.

Since the weekend, there have also been three admissions to hospital within Gwent where the individuals were suspected of being the subject of a drugs overdose. All were discharged following treatment.

Police said that all drugs support agencies have been alerted to the incidents so that appropriate advice can be given to drug users.

They are also urging users to be aware of the weekend's incidents and are working with drug services and hostels in the city to raise awareness among drug users.

Detective Constable Lyn Webber, Substance Misuse Education Officer for Gwent Police, said: "Avon and Somerset and Gwent Police are currently investigating these tragic deaths. We are concerned that they may be attributed to contaminated or high purity Class A drugs, however, this will not be determined until analysis has been carried out. We urge that individuals who use illicit drugs or have a illicit drug dependency contact local drug services for appropriate advice."

Anyone with any information about the three deaths or the supplier of drugs to the people who were found seriously ill is asked to contact police on 0845 456 7000 or 01633 838111 or Crimestoppers on: 0800 555 111.

(KMcA/SP)

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