YouTube airman cleared of snorting drugs

AN airman allegedly filmed taking drugs has been cleared of any wrongdoing after it emerged he was actually snorting powder from an energy drink.Last month, the command at RAF Mildenhall launched an investigation after a video was posted on the internet-based YouTube site allegedly showing US air crews taking drugs and drinking heavily.

Laurence Cawley

AN airman allegedly filmed taking drugs has been cleared of any wrongdoing after it emerged he was actually snorting powder from an energy drink.

Last month, the command at RAF Mildenhall launched an investigation after a video was posted on the internet-based YouTube site allegedly showing US air crews taking drugs and drinking heavily.

The video, made two years ago and filmed in a variety of locations including an off-base rented house, lasted five minutes and was made up of a montage of clips.

One of the men - who is based at RAF Mildenhall - was seen snorting a line of white powder.

But a spokesman for the base last night said the airman would not face any charges after a thorough investigation found him innocent of any wrongdoing.

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“We conducted an investigation and got statements from the people involved,” the spokesman said. “The person concerned is not going to be charged with any sort of crime.

“We believe the powder is Gatorade, an energy drink. It was thoroughly investigated.”

He added the video was filmed two years ago while the airman was living in rented property and that the film was posted by the landlord not the personnel involved.

The person who initially posted the video, a man who lives in the Mildenhall area, was yesterday unavailable for comment on the base's findings.

In the last three years, RAF Mildenhall has had two convictions of active duty personnel for illegal drug use. The base operates a urinalysis programme which means staff never know when they might have to provide a sample. Two thirds of base personnel are tested during any single year.

Last year, a number of airmen from neighbouring RAF Lakenheath were thrown out of the military for drugs offences following an undercover investigation sting operation.

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