TRACES of cocaine have been found in a number of locations only accessible with a pass throughout the Houses of Parliament.
The class A drug was detected in four of nine places tested in different parts of the building, including in areas surrounded by MPs’ offices.
Cocaine was found at four of nine locations tested throughout parliament[/caption]
Cocaine remains a class A drug in the UK[/caption]
The tests, conducted as part of an investigation by VICE, used a simple testing kit consisting of pale pink wipes that turn blue if cocaine is present.
The largest amount was detected in a toilet opposite the Strangers’ Bar, a venue only accessible to MPs, their invited guests, high ranking public officials, and accredited parliamentary journalists.
The substance was also found in a toilet opposite another bar and two others near to MPs’ offices.
A manufacturer of wipes similar to the ones used confirmed that the trace amounts of cocaine typically detectable in the mains water supply were “extremely unlikely” to show up in the tests.
The last few weeks has seen a numerous MPs admit publicly to having taken drugs, prompted by revelations that environment secretary Michael Gove had taken cocaine while working as a journalist in the 1990s.
Development secretary Rory Stewart admitted to smoking opium while at a wedding in Iran, while former Brexit secretary Dominic Raab said he had smoked cannabis at university.
Boris Johnson and Jeremy Hunt, the two candidates still in the running to replace Theresa May was prime minster, both admitted to having used cannabis in the past.
The admissions led to widespread criticism of the MPs, many of whom had been vocal in their opposition to drug use and remain supportive of the so-called War on Drugs.
Responding to the investigation, a parliamentary spokesperson told VICE: “Parliament takes the issue of substance misuse very seriously and offers a range of welfare and health support services for those who need them.
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“Parliament is a public place and we welcome over a million visitors a year who have access to the facilities.
“Should drug use be identified in Parliament, appropriate action would be taken.”
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