Colne soldier’s sample swopped

editorial image

A SOLDIER from Colne was kicked out of the Army after his drugs test sample was swopped by a comrade who had taken cocaine, a court martial was told.

The hearing, which has now been halted due to legal arguments, had been told that Sean Warren-Beck was discharged from the Army three years ago after a compulsory drugs test showed he had taken cocaine, which he denied.

He took the test alongside L/Cpl Anthony Molloy, who allegedly admitted to a sergeant shortly beforehand that he had taken the class A drug two days earlier.

Mr Warren-Beck (24), set out to prove his innocence and DNA tests showed that the samples had been switched.

An investigation was launched and L/Cpl Molloy was accused of switching the samples.

Both men were members of the 2nd Battalion the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment when they were tested. L/Cpl Molloy (29), had denied conduct prejudice of good order and military discipline by switching his compulsory drug testing urine sample with another.

Prosecuting at the hearing at Catterick Garrison, North Yorkshire, Capt. Chris Adair said: “This was a deliberate attempt to evade the repercussions of a drugs test”.”

Both men were tested at the Regiment’s headquarters at Fulwood Barracks, Preston, in August 2009, but former Kingsman Warren-Beck claimed he heard the NCO tell a sergeant shortly before the test that he had taken cocaine two days earlier.

Capt. Adair told the hearing: “This case is the result of the deliberate tampering of two drug test samples.

“The ultimate effect of switching the samples was the premature discharge from the Army of another soldier.”

The two men were tested when an Army drugs test team arrived at the barracks.

Both men gave samples at the same time but it was alleged that instead of taking his own sample to be tested, Molloy took his colleagues.

And when the results came back it showed that cocaine was present in Mr Warren-Beck’s sample and despite him protesting his innocence, he was kicked out of the Army.

Capt. Adair said: “He was convinced that his sample had been swapped.”

The case was halted following legal arguments and the Assistant Judge Advocate General Paul Camp instructed the three-man panel to acquit L/Cpl Molloy.

An Army source said that despite the result of the court martial, he could still face disciplinary action from his Regiment for drugs misuse.