Porn star arrested for photog’s death from inhaling toad venom

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A Spanish porn star was arrested last Friday in connection with the death of a photographer who inhaled the venom of a North American toad as part of a shamanic ritual.

The skin-flick performer, Nacho Vidal, 46, had been investigated over 11 months under suspicion of involuntary manslaughter and violating public health laws, reports The Guardian. 

According to a statement by local authorities, photographer José Luis Abad died after using a pipe to huff the vapors from the toxic bufo alvarius toad while at Vidal’s home in Valencia.

The noxious substance is secreted by the Southwest U.S.-dwelling amphibian to ward off predators, but has the added effect of inducing powerful psychedelic experiences due to containing the compound 5-MeO-DMT, reports the BBC. Also known as the “God molecule,” dimethyltryptamine (DMT) has been touted by its devotees as a cure for anxiety and depression, although little is known about its effects on humans.

And the so-called hallucinogenic holy grail is not without its dangers. According to the police statement, the “apparently harmless ancestral ritual” could be a “serious threat to public health,” luring in “highly suggestible people who were seeking alternative ways to cure certain ailments or addictions.”

Indeed, investigators report that they found that the toad venom ceremonies were being carried out on a regular basis. Vidal, who has appeared in more than 100 pornographic pictures, even previously promoted the trippy toxin on YouTube, according to local paper El País.

However, the porn actor’s lawyer maintains his client is innocent in the photographer’s unfortunate death. He told Spanish news agency Efe that while “Nacho is very upset” by the death, he “maintains that the consumption [of the venom] was completely voluntary.”

DMT currently lacks specific regulation in Spain, reports El País. In fact, the country has become somewhat of a mecca for the potent psychedelic with multiple companies dedicated to organizing events around its use.

nypost.com

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