Taking legal 'health' product led to death of Cleethorpes man in DR Congo
A LEGAL health supplement that has now been banned in the UK contributed to the death of a 30-year-old contractor working in Africa, an inquest heard.
Ben Chen Nash, of Wollaston Road, Cleethorpes, had bought energy product Jack 3D before he died suddenly and unexpectedly in the Democratic Republic of Congo on October 27.
It is the same product that Claire Squires drank before she died, a mile from the finish line of last year's London Marathon.
The active ingredient DMAA has now been banned but yesterday, Coroner Paul Kelly recorded that it – or similar products – had contributed to the otherwise unexplained death of Mr Nash.
MAYFAIR ESTATE AGENTS
IF WE CANNOT FIND YOU A TENANT WITHIN ONE MONTH WE WILL FIND YOU ONE FOR FREE, YES FREE, YOU WILL PAY NO FEES.
Terms: TERMS & CONDITIONS APPLY.
Contact: 01472 355 553
Valid until: Sunday, May 26 2013
His father John Nash told the court: "He always liked to keep himself in good condition and go to the gym but would have had no idea that this product could be dangerous."
Ben had been working as an electrical contractor since last spring and was just two weeks away from going home for good when he was found dead in his living quarters, the inquest heard.
His father had booked a holiday to Canada for the two of them just days before and Ben was "over the moon".
The day before his death, Ben had gone to work – where he often did 12-hour days in the sweltering African heat – and visited the gym afterwards, as he regularly did.
He and some colleagues then went for a meal, accompanied by a chaperone as the town where they worked was very dangerous.
They had been drinking alcohol, but not excessively, and Ben was last seen on the sofa at 2.48am.
At about 6am, a colleague called for medical assistance because he could not wake Ben up, and he was pronounced dead at 7am.
His body was brought back to the UK for a post mortem examination, although it took until November 12 because Mr Nash told the court that officials in the African country had demanded bribes.
Dr Willam Martin Peters, consultant pathologist, said the examination revealed that a sudden and unexpected heart attack was the cause of death.
The results, he said, "could not find a sufficient reason why this young person might have had a heart attack".
Dr Kelly recorded that the death was due to a heart attack, contributed to by over-exertion in a hot climate and a combination of DMAA and other energy supplements.
Ben's father urged others to be more aware of the product – which he believes is still on sale.
He added: "It goes under more than 25 names, including geranium extract – people think this is a plant but it is an amphetamine.
"Because of the nature of this 'health' product, it is not being properly policed."