57 students fall ill in Chiapas after suspected cocaine poising in school

Dozens of adolescents who study at the Juana de Asbaje secondary school in Bochil, Chiapas, were intoxicated after unknowingly ingesting drugs on Friday. According to the first reports, the minors began to present various symptoms and discomforts that took some to the local hospital.

The directors alerted the authorities, who arrived at the scene to provide medical care to the adolescents in a situation of total chaos. Later, some of those affected underwent a toxicological profile in the laboratory and the result was positive for cocaine, for which the case is already being investigated. One of the explanations that are sustained is that the water in the building was contaminated with the drug.

The Prosecutor’s Office reported in a statement that expert services personnel perform toxicology tests on students; the results of 15 processed samples “were negative for prohibited substances, drugs of abuse.”

The number of intoxicated youths has not been officially determined, but those who were transferred to a (public) hospital have. According to the Mexican Institute of Social Security (IMSS) of the state, 57 minors were treated, of which one was reported in serious condition, and the rest as stable.

“So far we do not have precise data, however, as a municipal administration we help with the educational authorities and parents from the first calls for help, so we have focused on the health of adolescents. We provide all the support to the IMSS, just as we have been on the lookout for the parents of the children admitted to this health institute”, reads the statement by the municipality of Bochil.

Other explanations that emerged among the students and parents (in addition to the alleged contaminated water), is that the drug could have been ingested in food from the cafeteria itself or in a cake. What is certain is that the most prevalent symptoms among those affected were nausea, headache, sweating, stomach pain, and even fainting.

“Likewise, we inform the public that these events outrage us, so we are collaborating strongly with the State Attorney General’s Office so that the investigations are carried out immediately and within the legal framework and thus clarify the facts”, ends the letter from the city government.

This story was updated after a further investigation ruled out cocaine poisoning after at least 15 tests came back negative for cocaine.

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