Two held amid probe into UK 'ecstasy' deaths

Two men have been arrested by police in Britain investigating the deaths of two people who may have taken contaminated ecstasy tablets.

Greater Manchester Police are questioning the men, aged 33 and 34, on suspicion of being concerned in supplying a controlled drug.

It comes after police warned that a contaminated batch of ecstasy tablets could be circulating following the deaths of the two “apparently fit young men” from the same town.

Gareth Ashton, 28, died at Wigan Infirmary on Monday, and Jordan Chambers, 19, died at Oldham Hospital on Sunday.

The pair, both from Wigan, admitted to hospital after complaining of feeling unwell and suffered the same symptoms. Both said they had taken drugs.

Greater Manchester Police are investigating where the men had been socialising and if they were out together when they took the pills.

Several others went to hospital yesterday suffering similar symptoms, but all have been released, said Superintendent Andrea Jones.

A third man, a 26-year-old, died in Liverpool on Sunday and is believed to have taken tablets – possibly ecstasy – before he collapsed.

Greater Manchester Police are not currently linking his death to the two in their region, but said they could not discount a connection.

The drugs thought to be contaminated are brightly coloured heart-shaped ecstasy tablets which come in purple, green, red and yellow. Ms Jones urged anyone with information on such pills to come forward to help them with their inquiries.

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