| 11.9°C Dublin

Drugs cocktail linked to men's party deaths

TWO men who died after a tragic Christmas Eve party are believed to have overdosed on a lethal cocktail of heroin and methadone further complicated by alcohol.

John Foley (33) and John O'Donoghue (34) died from suspected drug overdoses linked to a party in a Cork flats complex which started on Christmas Eve and only concluded in the early hours of Christmas Day.

Gardai are now seeking one person who was at the same party and who they have so far been unable to trace.

Nine other people who were at the party have been contacted and have suffered no health issues.

Both men were found hours apart on Christmas Day in an unresponsive state at a flats complex at an address at Rockgrove Terrace off the Glanmire Road in Cork -- and less than 100m from Kent railway station. Both died within a short time of being discovered.

Gardai said they would only be able to confirm the precise cause of death after the full results of toxicology tests are received.

However, a garda source told the Herald that their probe is now focused on the suspicion the men accidentally ingested a lethal cocktail of drugs -- possibly including both heroin and methadone.

This may have been further complicated by alcohol. The tests will also seek to rule out any suggestion the drug were contaminated.

Post-mortem examinations began on both men yesterday at Cork University Hospital (CUH) by the State Pathologist's Office.


Toxicology tests were conducted and gardai are now seeking to speak to all those who were with the two men over the previous 48 hours.

One garda described the incident as "a terrible tragedy".

The incident unfolded when both men attended a party on Christmas Eve which continued into the early hours of Christmas Day.

Mr Foley -- who is originally from Mayfield -- had been living in the Rockgrove Terrace flats complex over recent months.

Mr O'Donoghue -- who has addresses in both Youghal and Knocknaheeny in Cork -- is understood to have been visiting the Rockgrove complex and decided to stay over on Christmas Eve after the party.

A total of 12 apartments are in the three-storey building -- with dozens of other flats complexes along the same street.

Mr Foley's girlfriend visited at lunchtime on Christmas Day and discovered the 33-year-old in an unresponsive state in his flat. She alerted the emergency services. Mr Foley was pronounced dead a short time later.

Mr O'Donoghue was discovered by his partner in a similarly unresponsive state in a different flat.

He was rushed to hospital shortly after 8pm on Christmas night. His condition deteriorated and he was pronounced dead in the early hours of yesterday.

Gardai stressed that the nature of their investigation will now be determined by the State pathologist's report.

The full toxicology results are not expected for a fortnight.