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Officers from Cheshire police have arrested a 24-year-old man in connection with the supply of a potentially lethal chemical.
The man was arrested on Thursday 2 July following a warrant at an address off Cinderhill, Whitegate.
The warrant was conducted as part of a joint operation between Cheshire Police, West Midlands Police and the Food Standard's Agency National Food Crime Unit.
The man is being held on suspicion of being concerned in the supply of class C drugs, rendering food injurious to health contrary to section 7 of the Food Safety Act, 1990, and money laundering.
The arrest relates to the alleged supply of 2,4-Dinitrophenol (DNP), a toxic chemical that is sometimes sold as a diet pill for weight loss. It is poisonous to humans and can be unstable if not stored properly.
A 21-year-old woman was also arrested at the address on suspicion of possession with intent to supply class C drugs (anabolic steroids).
The man and woman have both been released under investigation.
During the warrant officers seized a number of items, including a number of digital devices, computer equipment and suspected class C drugs.
Andy Quinn, Deputy Head of the National Food Crime Unit, who have led the investigation, said: “It is illegal to sell DNP for human consumption as it is a dangerous industrial chemical which has been linked to a number of deaths.
"I would like to thank all those involved in this operation that aimed to tackle the online sale of DNP for human consumption.
"It is our close working partnership with local authorities, law enforcement agencies and internet companies in the UK and abroad that has enabled us to close these websites and work to disrupt possible supply chains."
Sergeant Chris Palmer, from Northwich Local Policing Unit, added: “This morning’s arrest forms part of an ongoing investigation into the supply of DNP, an illegal drug which is often sold as a diet pill. This substance is extremely dangerous and has been linked to a number of deaths across the UK.
"I would like to use this as an opportunity to highlight the dangers of DNP.
"It is an industrial chemical and is not made to be consumed as a diet supplement. Please do not be persuaded by the claims being made, those selling DNP do not care about your wellbeing."