'Blowfish Poison Behind Two Accidental Deaths on Expressway'

Sunday, August 17, 2008

'Blowfish Poison Behind Two Accidental Deaths on Expressway'

By Kim Rahn
Staff Reporter

Police tentatively concluded the two middle-aged men found dead in a car on the hard shoulder of an expressway in April died from ``accidentally'' ingesting blowfish poison. However, why they took the deadly poison still remains unsolved.

A police officer of Gwangju Police Office in Gyeonggi Province said Sunday that the National Institute of Scientific Investigation informed police that tetrodotoxin was found in their bodies. The institute told the police that the blowfish poison was found in both the victims' bodies, 50-year-old doctor Kim and 48-year-old businessman Park.

The poison was also in the syringe and red ginseng drink bottles found at the scene. Kim bought the poison three days before the death. Considering the circumstances, police tentatively concluded that they took the poison accidentally.

``It is likely that they mistook the blowfish poison for stimulants or energy drink, as they were to play golf for money. We could not find any evidence pointing to murder, and the victims called for help at an emergency center minutes before death, so we believe it was neither suicide nor murder,'' the official said.

``However, it is unclear how Kim, a doctor, mistook the deadly poison, which he had bought only three days ago, for other drugs,'' he said.

Park and Kim, high school alumni who were heading for a golf club in Gangwon Province on April 27, were found dead in Park's car on the side of the highway in Gwangju around 7:40 a.m.

According to CCTV recording, they visited an expressway rest stop at 6:12 a.m. near Gwangju interchange, and Kim got out of the car holding a plastic bag. In a dustbin in the restroom, a plastic bag was found with two bottles of ginseng drink and a syringe. Another two bottles of the same drink were found in Kim's golf bag.

Around 6:30 a.m., Park called an emergency center, saying that he could not breathe and mentioning being poisoned.

rahnita@koreatimes.co.kr

http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/nation/2008/08/117_26342.html

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