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article imageOxford University students warned over heroin dealing

By Chris Dade     Feb 20, 2010 in Lifestyle
Students at one of the world's most prestigious educational institutions, Oxford University in England, have been warned against dealing in heroin.
It was Oxford University's independent student newspaper Cherwell which first reported that an anonymous letter had been sent to authorities at one of Oxford's largest colleges, Christ Church.
The letter had warned the authorities at what is one of 38 colleges and six Permanent Private Halls at Oxford that a "considerable drugs culture" can be found among the students at Christ Church.
According to the Telegraph those students number 426.
And as a consequence of the anonymous letter, junior Censor Ian Watson, described by the Daily Mail as the person "in charge of discipline" at Christ Church, has sent an email to his college's students with the subject line "Urgent warning concerning drugs".
Explaining to the students that "The law applies just as rigorously within college as elsewhere" and that he and his colleagues cannot and will not protect anyone who breaks the law Mr Watson said:Last week the censors received an anonymous letter alleging the existence in Christ Church of a considerable drugs culture, including the supplying of class A drugs such as heroin. The letter named one individual.
The police, whom the censors consulted in the person of the community liaison officer who deals with the university, have advised that this letter does not in itself constitute usable evidence with which to start an investigation.
All junior members should, however, recall that the use, and especially the supplying, of prohibited drugs constitutes a serious criminal offence
While students interviewed by Cherwell acknowledged that drugs could be found at Christ Church, and one student is quoted by the Daily Mail as saying "On the surface Christ Church appears to be full of hardworking, bookish students. In reality, drug use and supply is widespread", the consensus seems to be that heroin is not being widely used by those attending the college.
With Ian Watson dubbed by one female student "an over-enthusiastic Censor being over-dramatic", another unnamed student opined:It looks like some nutter coming in, seeing a few people looking rough, and saying they're all smack-heads. It's palpably false - there is no Heroin in Christ Church
However Christ Church has been at the center of a controversy involving the use of heroin on a previous occasion.
In 1986 Olivia Channon, the 22-year-old daughter of the late Paul Channon, Conservative Secretary of State for Transport and Secretary of State for Trade and Industry during the 1980s, died at a party on campus from the effects of the alcohol she had consumed and the heroin she had taken.
The party attended by Ms Channon had taken place in the room of Count Gottfried von Bismarck, who was to eventually die in 2007 at the age of 44 after what the Daily Mail said at the time and the Telegraph said this weekend was "a two-day binge on cocaine and heroin".
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