THE grieving dad of a young woman killed by banned diet pills this week flew 1,500 miles to hunt down the Ukrainian dealer who sold them.
Doug Shipsey secured an extraordinary confession from gym fanatic Andrei Shepelev after confronting him over the death of daughter Beth.
Doug Shipsey, left, travelled to Ukraine this week to confront the drug dealer who sold his daughter deadly diet pills online. Doug is pictured with grieving wife Carole holding a photo of Beth[/caption]
The pill factory in Andrei Shepelev’s grimy Soviet-era flat in Ukraine after it was raided by police in November[/caption]
She died aged 21 in February 2017 after taking so-called “fat burning” pills sent by Shepelev – pills that experts have called “extremely dangerous”.
After two years of fighting for justice, Mr Shipsey arrived at Shepelev’s grimy Soviet-era flat – later admitting he feared he would be shot, the Daily Mail reports.
But holding a picture of Beth, he bravely told the dishevelled dealer: “I want you to look into my daughter’s eyes and apologise for selling her the pills that killed her.”
Standing at the door of his grimy Breaking Bad-style drug factory, Shepelev, 31, replied: “I’m sorry, but I just wanted to make some money.”
He added: “I’m sorry I’m not crying, but I can say I feel sorry.
“If I knew your daughter would [die] I would never sell her anything.”
Shepelev admitted processing the deadly chemical that killed Beth – shipping it to her in capsules hidden in a DVD case.
And prompted by Mr Shipsey, who travelled from Worcester, the dealer also made a personal apology to Beth’s mother Carole.
He added: “It was just a business idea to buy Ukranian cheap stuff and sell it to the UK, just for money.”
But in a bizarre attempt at compassion, Shepelev said: “After deaths, sales go up four or five times, but I didn’t sell to the UK after this moment.”
Deadly drug: What is Dinitrophenol (DNP)?
BANNED DNP works by speeding up the metabolism, but it can lead to slimmers fatally overheating, with users describing feeling as if they are “being boiled alive”.
It has been linked to 23 deaths in the UK since 2012 and Public Health England has warned that deaths from DNP use are increasing.
The chemical was designed as an industrial pesticide.
Side-effects include sweating, body overheating. insomnia, lethargy and cramps.
But even a tiny overdose can burn out the nervous system and cause a deadly heart attack.
SOLD AS ‘FAT BURNER’
Animal welfare activist Beth suffered a heart attack after taking the pills containing dinitrophenol – or DNP.
The dangerous chemical is marketed online as a “fat burner” – but was designed as a pesticide and a chemical dye.
Tiny doses can overwhelm the nervous system and lead to an extremely fast heartbeat that can result in coma and death.
Beth paid £156.55 for the 24 pills produced in Shepelev’s shabby one-bedroom flat in Volochysk, Khmelnytskyi.
I didn’t know how [Shepelev] would react – I though he might pull out an AK-47 and shoot me
Company director Mr Shipsey said of the confrontation: “I didn’t know how [Shepelev] would react – I though he might pull out an AK-47 and shoot me.
“When I stood in the door of Shepelev’s flat, with its walls stained yellow from his drug production, I had to restrain myself from wanting to wring his neck.
“But that’s not me – I just wanted him to admit what he’s done, and apologise for it to Beth’s family, while looking into her eyes and mine.
“I want to send a message to other dealers in death – we, the relatives of their victims, will come for them.”
FIGHT FOR JUSTICE
An inquest last year found that Beth – who suffered from mental health problems – had intended to take her own life
Her heartbroken family believe that poor care at Worcestershire Royal hospital also contributed to her death.
Ukrainian police raided Shepelev’s flat in November – and later set him free claiming there was no evidence of drugs.
But Shepelev this week admitted the capsules he sent to Beth were “full” of the deadly chemical.
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His confession has been sent to Ukranian drug squad officers.
Mr Shipsey added: “I still believe that while Shepelev thinks he is in the clear, he may yet be brought to justice.
“The police said there was no evidence he had DNP at his flat, but he admitted to me that he had.”
Beth, 21, suffered a fatal heart attack after taking banned DNP – a highly dangerous pesticide that’s marketed online as a ‘fat burner’[/caption]
Animal welfare activist Beth overdosed on the dangerous drug sold to her online by a ruthless pill pusher[/caption]
Carole Shipsey, left, and Doug Shipsey have been fighting for justice for their daughter for two years[/caption]
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