Greater Manchester Police are investigating the death of a man who was taken ill at The Warehouse Project in the early hours of Saturday, 25th September. The death follows recent warnings about high-strength pills following hospitalisations and two deaths in English clubs in August.
Officers were called to Manchester Royal Infirmary following the man's death, while five other people attending the venue were taken to hospital after taking a drug, thought to be ecstasy, police said. They are currently receiving treatment in hospital, with some believed to be friends of the man who died, and another, a woman, thought to be unconnected to the group.
While the cause of death, and the illness of the other people, remains unconfirmed, four people who were at the Metropolis event, at the Depot Mayfield venue, have been arrested on suspicion of supplying, and possession of, class A drugs.
"We are devastated and our condolences are with the individual's family and friends," said a representative from The Warehouse Project. "We are working closely with the Greater Manchester authorities to help with inquiries at this stage."
Greater Manchester Police Det Insp Aaron Duggan said: "It is possible that there may be a particularly bad batch of drugs out there in the community and that is a concern to us. If you attended The Warehouse Project last night and are feeling unwell, I would ask you to go to hospital for a check-up as soon as possible."
Giving more detail, Ch Supt Mark Roberts said the drugs taken by the six people were thought to have come from two sources.
"If people buy drugs in these circumstances, you really don't know what you're getting and it could be fatal the first time you take it," Robert said. "I don't think it's worth the gamble and people need to be aware of the dangers.
"We have seen different drugs from different suppliers. One has sadly led to the death of someone - someone else has been seriously ill - so there is a really chance that if you take these drugs, you could become very ill or die."
In response to last weekend's events, harm reduction initiative The Loop shared an infographic with details of the substances found in ‘Louis Vuitton' pills, which were reportedly bought in Manchester. This warning follows on from another shared earlier in September by The Loop, which found that various sets of identical-looking ecstasy pills in circulation, and tested at Manchester's Parklife festival, actually contained different substances.
The Loop also put out an alert about blue Tesla-emblazoned pills last month, with two drug-related deaths of young people having happened after being taken ill at clubs in London and Bristol in July. (It's not yet been reported exactly what caused those deaths.)
For more, read DJ Mag's recent feature on why the discussion around drug harm minimisation is more important than ever, here.