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Hoffman drug arrests

Four people have been taken into custody on drug charges by police investigating actor Philip Seymour Hoffman's death. Police believe Hoffman may have died from a drug overdose, though his death is being investigated as suspicious pending a more definitive ruling by the medical examiner.

Hoffman was found dead on Sunday with a needle in his arm. Tests found heroin – but no traces of the potent synthetic morphine additive fentanyl, which intensifies the high and has been linked to 22 suspected overdose deaths in Pennsylvania – in samples from at least 50 packets in his apartment.

SNAKE SURPRISE

Visitors to a popular botanic garden were surprised to find a snake living among the trees and plants. The 2ft California kingsnake was discovered in the warm palm house at the Glasgow Botanic Gardens. Staff called the SSPCA, which rescued the non-poisonous snake.

HORSING INTO TESCO

A woman is being investigated by police after she rode into a supermarket on horseback to take part in a craze that is sweeping the net.

Inky Ralph (21) was filmed riding into a Tesco store in Bishop Auckland, in north-east England, and downing a Pepsi Max as part of a Neknomination challenge.

PIG MEDIATION BID

An Australian cricket fan who allegedly smuggled a pig into a Brisbane sports ground during a Test against England has agreed to undergo mediation with the RSPCA.

David Gunn (33) was charged with animal cruelty after the pig was sneaked into the Gabba ground with its snout taped shut and disguised as a baby. Mr Gunn was found holding the 26lb pig in a baby harness on the first day of the first Ashes test in November.

Name change row

An east Tennessee magistrate has been replaced months after ordering a baby's name changed from Messiah to Martin because she believes Messiah is a title held only by Jesus Christ. Judge Duane Slone removed Lu Ann Ballew from her position as a child support magistrate and appointed a successor. The name change decision was overturned at a later hearing.

1977 FUGITIVE FOUND

A woman who escaped from a Michigan prison nearly 37 years ago has been found living under an alias in San Diego. Judy Lynn Hayman (60) is in a local jail awaiting extradition to Michigan, San Diego police said. She escaped from jail in 1977 while serving time for attempted larceny.

Irish Independent