Belfast Telegraph

Cocktail of drugs killed man at party

By Michael McHugh

A party which lasted for days ended in tragedy after a man took the formerly legal-high drug mephedrone, an inquest has heard.

Wayne Brown (31), was found unresponsive on the floor of a bedroom in Bessbrook, south Armagh, at the end of last year.

The steel erector was socialising with friends until the cocktail of illicit substances caused heart failure.

Mephedrone was banned in 2010 because of a number of deaths linked to it.

Stuart Edmonds battled to save his friend's life when he discovered him unconscious.

He told the Belfast inquest: “His hand was shaking and both hands were raised. His head was tilted back and his eyes were open but there was no breathing.”

Brown, from Lisnalee Park in Mountnorris, had a history of substance abuse, such as using Ecstasy, acid and speed. He was taking tablets and white powder diluted in hot water.

A post-mortem examination found that death was from drug toxicity.

Deputy State Pathologist Dr Alastair Bentley found evidence of mephedrone, indicating possible excessive consumption or high recreational use. He also detected use of similar recreational drugs BZP and TFMPP.

Coroner Suzanne Anderson recorded that the victim died from mixed drug toxicity.

“This case highlights the very grave dangers of consuming illicit drugs and we have seen a family left devastated as a result,” she said.

Possession of mephedrone can result in five years in jail. Supplying someone else can bring a sentence of up to 14 years.

Belfast Telegraph

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