7 May 2015

Interpol warns against diet pills bought online

8:10 am on 7 May 2015

Interpol has issued an international warning about buying diet pills online after a woman in Britain died from multiple organ failure.

Ella Parry

Ella Parry Photo: SUPPLIED

Ella Parry died last month after taking up to eight of the pills containing DNP, a substance used in pesticides and explosives.

Police say the pills caused the 21-year-old's temperature to become so high that her organs failed and she died at Royal Shrewsbury Hospital, Shropshire.

They are investigating where the Shrewsbury student bought the pills. Detective Chief Inspector Jennifer Mattinson said DNP was not illegal to possess in Britain but should not be consumed.

She said anything bought over the internet, in particular from unregistered websites and where the items were coming from abroad, was similar to buying medicines on the street.

"Were you to be on holiday in another country, would you take these items from somebody in the street and hand over your cash? Because there really is no more protection."

In New Zealand, Medsafe said it did not know of any cases of the pills being taken.