Warning after toxic green fake ecstasy pills found at T in the Park

Police say Rolex-stamped pills which were linked to several deaths in 2013 may be back in circulation

Warning after toxic green fake ecstasy pills found at T in the Park
Special ‘amnesty bins’ for revellers to dump their drugs in were stationed around the T in the Park festival site. Photograph: T in the Park/PA

Music fans leaving the T in the Park festival have been warned that a toxic batch of fake ecstasy pills may be in circulation while police continue their inquiries into the possibly drug-related deaths of two teenagers and an alleged rape at the Perthshire event.

As the Red Hot Chili Peppers closed the festival on Sunday evening, Police Scotland warned that a number of Green Rolex-type pills had been recovered at the festival and others that may be in circulation.

In 2013, the green pills – some of which were found to contain the dangerous stimulant para-Methoxyamphetamine, known as PMA – were linked to 15 deaths across Scotland and Northern Ireland.

Police Scotland said there was no evidence to link the pills, which are stamped with the distinctive Rolex crown, to the deaths of the two 17-year-olds at the campsite on Friday. The youngsters have been named locally as Megan Bell, from Seaham in County Durham, and Peter MacCallum, from Lochgilphead, Argyll.

The Guardian understands that this is the first time the potentially toxic pills have come to Police Scotland’s attention since the 2013 deaths, which led to warnings from police and drug agencies in Scotland and Northern Ireland. At the time, there were unconfirmed reports that drug dealers were burying their surplus supplies in order to introduce them back into circulation once concerns had faded. Police said inquiries were continuing as to where this latest batch could have come from.

T in the Park organisers urged anyone carrying drugs at the festival to leave them in special “amnesty bins” stationed around the site.

Following the deaths on Friday, Police Scotland’s gold commander for the festival, Ch Supt Angela McLaren, said: “We are continuing to investigate these deaths and are following lines of inquiry, including the possibility that they may be drug related. I would remind all persons attending the festival that there is no safe way of taking drugs.”

The alleged rape of an 18-year-old woman happened in the festival campsite. A Police Scotland spokesman said: “Police are making inquiries into a report of a rape of an 18-year-old female on Thursday evening. Our inquiries are ongoing.”

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