Crime: Smart move that kept killer batch of contaminated heroin off the streets

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A drug dealer has voluntarily handed over to the police a batch of contaminated heroin believed to have already killed two people.

The 30 grams of brown powder had a street value of pounds 5,000 and was enough to make 1,000 potentially lethal "wraps" or doses. A known drug dealer arranged to drop off the package in the North Tyneside area of Northumberland.

The substance was found to contain dihydrocodeine, which is a morphine derivative, kaolin and acids, which can be lethal if injected. It is thought to have been sold as heroin in the Blyth Valley area

Police believe the batch of drugs led to the deaths of two men - Lee Percy and Mark Miller - in the Northumbria force area recently, as well as "numerous overdoses".

Detective Chief Inspector Allan Bowman, the south-east Northumberland crime manager, said: "Dealers realised the lethal consequences of this drug if it was injected. Whoever cut this obviously had a total disregard for life," said Mr Bowman.

"I believe this recovery has saved lives and showed that the efforts of police and other agencies to tackle the drugs problem in Blyth Valley are paying off."