One Dead, 50+ Charged With Drug Offences At Lost Paradise Festival

A 22-year-old man has died, and two other young people are in hospital after consuming an “unknown substance” at Lost Paradise music festival yesterday.

The Queensland man, who passed away shortly after arriving at hospital, suffered an adverse reaction to the substance at 8pm yesterday.

Two other people – a man and a woman – are also in hospital after ingesting an unknown substance.

Lost Paradise, which is hosting 11,000 revellers this year, is billed as a “strictly drug free event”, and has issued a statement saying they have employed several strategies to reduce harm, including engaging the help of DanceWize.

“A great deal of planning and effort goes into ensuring the safety and welfare of our festival-goers and event staff. We work closely with local police to try to ensure festival-goers respect our drug free policy and NSW Ambulance to provide extensive medical support across the festival site,” the spokesperson said.

“This is a very distressing incident and our sincerest thoughts and condolences are with the family and friends of the deceased. The matter is the subject of a police investigation and we will continue to cooperate and provide whatever assistance we can.”

The festival has also been the target of a major police operation, with the NSW Police Force searching over 184 festival-goers (and their tents), and 100 vehicles.

These searches have resulted in 50 court notices for drug possession as well as three charges for drug supply offences.

One 21-year-old man was caught with 105 MDMA pills (ecstasy), while police found 80 MDMA pills and 65 backs of cocaine on a 23-year-old man. Another 23-year-old man was charged with drug supply after police discovered 26 MDMA pills on him.

This death comes in the wake of the several tragic festival deaths, including that of Callum Brosnan who was found at a train station after attending the Knockout Games of Destiny dance party in Sydney’s Olympic Park and died in hospital shortly after, and the two deaths at Defqon festival in September this year.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian is yet to comment on the incident, which has reignited public debate about the government’s hard-line stance on pill testing.

Festival-goers who wish to purchase pill-testing kits can find their local supplier here.

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