Two die of legal drug overdose

Two young men in Linköping in south-east Sweden have died after overdosing on the psychoactive drug methedrone, a substance that is not yet illegal in Sweden and can be bought on the internet, local news website reports.

The results of a post mortem examination were finalised last week following the deaths of the two young men during the summer.

“We have classified the deaths as methedrone poisoning,” said Arne Eklund, acting manager at the National Board of Forensic Medicine’s Linköping branch.

Police in the city are frustrated at the legal status of the drug. Having recently seized a large quantity of the drug, they may have no alternative but to return it to its owner.

“It’s a nightmare,” Chief Inspector Magnus Råsten told Corren.

The Ministry of Health and Social Affairs is currently in the process of preparing a draft proposal with the aim of classifying the drug as a narcotic. The government is expected to approve the proposal by the end of the year.

According to the Swedish National Institute of Public Health, methedrone, or bk-PMMA, is a new substance that has become more widely available in 2009.

The institute said the substance brings on a euphoric rush in users and could be viewed as a substitute for the related drug mephedrone, which was classified as a narcotic in May of this year.

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‘Absolutely incredible’ no-one was seriously injured in Linköping explosion: police

Special police unit NOA (Nationella operativa avdelningen) will reinforce city police in Linköping on Saturday as efforts to clear up Friday morning’s explosion continue.

'Absolutely incredible' no-one was seriously injured in Linköping explosion: police
A police officer near the scene of the explosion in Linköping. Photo: Jeppe Gustafsson/TT

Investigation into Friday's blast, which injured around 20, is set to be extensive.

“It is absolutely incredible that nobody was seriously injured,” police press spokesperson Björn Öberg said.

Police have now limited street closures to the most severely-damaged sites.

“Assistance from NOA will arrive today and we are moving to a phase of pure investigation. It is a comprehensive job to put together all the leads and tip-offs we have had, so it will be a large investigation,” Öberg said.

No arrests have yet been made in connection with the explosion.

“We do not want to commit ourselves to a particular hypothesis,” Öberg said.

The explosion appears to have occurred just outside the apartment building which received the most damage.

That worse casualties did not result is down to pure luck, according to the police spokesperson.

Around 20 people received mild injuries in the explosion on Friday morning, with three being taken to the city’s University Hospital.

“They have splinters and cuts. Two patients are still here,” Region Östergötland medical officer Kim Berg said to press on Friday.

Either gas or explosives could have caused the blast, although explosives appear to be the most likely, Henric Östmark of the Swedish Defence Forces’ (Totalförsvaret) research unit told Corren.

“Most bomb explosions in Sweden in recent times have been smaller (than this),” Östmark said.

“We have to go quite far back in time to find something in Sweden with an explosion of this size,” he added.

Police said on Friday that they do not believe the explosion was linked to terror, but were not ruling anything out.

READ ALSO: Linköping blast: Explosive device blew up outside building