World News

Escaped boa constrictor found at allotment in Wales

Allotment holders in South Wales got the shock of their life when they discovered a 6ft (1.8-metre) boa constrictor among their vegetables.

The red-tailed snake was found by a member of the public at a community allotment site in Newport on 14 June.

It was quickly transported to a local police station before the RSPCA drove it to a specialist care facility in the West Midlands.

The giant snake is believed to be someone’s pet, but it is not known where it escaped from.

Stephanie Davidson, RSPCA animal collection officer, said: “This would have been a pretty unbelievable find at an allotment – with a 6ft, red-tailed boa constrictor coming for a visit.

“However, it is another reminder of what remarkable escape artists these exotic animals can be.

“We regularly respond to escaped snakes, and continue to highlight the importance of safe, secure and appropriate accommodation for these animals, who have such complex needs.

“Snakes can also be microchipped – and we’d urge anyone owning one to explore whether this is a possibility, to ensure they can be returned home more easily should they stray.”

Anyone with information about the snake – or who may know the owner – has been urged to contact the RSPCA’s inspectorate appeal line on 0300 123 8018.

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World News

Welder, 36, found dead after consuming too much caffeine

A welder died from consuming too much caffeine, an inquest has heard.

Polish national Lukasz Sandelewski, 36, was found dead in his room at a shared house in Peterborough after his mother became concerned and asked one of his housemates to check on him in December last year.

It is unclear how he consumed the caffeine, but a coroner said his room was “very cluttered with lots of empty drinking vessels on the floor”.

Mr Sandelewski had a blood caffeine concentration of 282 micrograms of caffeine per millilitre of blood when he died, the inquest in Huntingdon heard.

Any level above 80 micrograms of caffeine per millilitre of blood can be fatal.

The inquest recorded a verdict of misadventure, meaning the death was caused accidentally without intent to harm.

Cambridgeshire assistant coroner Sean Horstead said: “It’s unclear how or by what means the deceased consumed very significant levels of caffeine but caffeine toxicity is the cause of his death.

“His death was the unintended consequence of a deliberate act.

“He deliberately consumed a significant and fatal quantity of caffeine but I’m satisfied the consequences of that weren’t intended by him.”

Mr Horstead said there was no evidence that Mr Sandelewski intended to end his life and there was no suicide note.

The inquest heard the 36-year-old returned home at 1am on 5 December and was heard “shouting and talking loudly” on the phone through the night until around 7am.

That evening, one of the housemates received a Facebook message from Mr Sandelewski’s mother asking to check where he was, as she had not heard from him.

The housemate then went to Mr Sandelewski’s room and found him unresponsive, face down on the floor by his mattress.

Police who were called to the home found no visible injuries to the welder.

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