Jun 2 2006
By Ben Ashford
A RAVER died after taking ecstasy at South London's top music venue.
The 26-year-old and his pals took the class-A drug at the Brixton Academy on Saturday night as it hosted a trance and hard-house event.
He became ill in the early hours and went to a medical room inside the venue before being taken to hospital where he died at 4.30am on Sunday.
Police seized a number of ecstasy pills similar to those he had swallowed but said there was "nothing unusual" about the batch.
The 26-year-old - who has not been named by police - was thought to have been fit and healthy before attending the award-winning venue in Stockwell Park Road, which was hosting the Supernova rave event.
Eight people fell ill in April after taking ecstasy at the Factory nightclub in Goding Street, Vauxhall, but all recovered.
Police say Saturday's tragedy highlights the dangerous link between clubbing and illegal drug taking. It comes just weeks after officers swooped on suspected drug dealers at Brixton's Fridge nightclub and closed the venue for more than a month.
Similar closures were promised across the borough if nightclub bosses failed to take action to keep their clubs free of drugs.
Superintendent Stewart Low,in charge of policing Brixton, described the death as the "unnecessary loss of a young man's life".
He said: "The links between clubbing events and drugs must be broken. Lambeth police work in partnership with clubs towards this objective.
"Our recent raid at The Fridge nightclub highlights how strongly we feel on this point."
None of the dead man's friends, who travelled to the club together from Brighton and all took ecstasy,were harmed.
A post-mortem has been carried out and an inquest opened and adjourned. No arrests have been made.
A Met spokesman said: "Lambeth CID continue to make enquiries as to the full circumstances of the incident, including the source of the drugs."
Academy spokeswoman Louise Kovacs said: "We are liaising with the police over their inquiry and would like to extend our deepest sympathies to the friends and family of the deceased."
For free and confidential advice on the risks of illegal drugs, call the Government's Frank advice line on 0800 77 66 00.