Second Salisbury officer was poisoned by novichok, say police

Written by on 15/08/2019

A second police officer was poisoned by the nerve agent novichok while responding to the incident in Salisbury in March last year, Metropolitan Police have confirmed.

Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey was the only police officer from Wiltshire confirmed to have been poisoned when responding to the attack on Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in 2018.

But Scotland Yard now say a blood sample from a second officer, who does not wish to be named, contained the nerve agent.

The officer displayed signs at the time of the incident that indicated he had been exposed, and was treated. His symptoms included skin irritation.

He returned to his duties soon after.

Forensic analysis has taken place on a blood sample taken from the officer and confirms novichok was present.

The Skripals were taken ill in March 2018, when Yulia was in Salisbury to visit her father, a former Russian spy.

They both recovered, and Mr Bailey ran a marathon at the weekend for the hospital which treated him.

But the attack claimed the life of Dawn Sturgess, whose partner Charlie Rowley stumbled on a perfume bottle which happened to contain the deadly nerve agent.

She used the perfume and died in hospital. Mr Rowley was also critically ill for some time.

Detectives from the Counter Terror Police have contacted other people who had blood samples taken at the time of the poisoning to seek consent for further forensic testing.

The testing is designed to help with their investigation and to confirm if anyone else had novichok in their blood.

Met Police said no one who did not suffer health problems at the time should be concerned about long-term health issues following possible contact with the agent.

Two men, Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, are wanted by the UK for the attack on the Skripals.

Both men deny they were involved in the attack, which UK intelligence services linked to Russia. There was a mass expulsion of Russian diplomats from several countries around the world after the poisoning.

A European Arrest Warrant and Interpol Red Notices remain in circulation for the two men.

The investigation into the Salisbury attack is still ongoing, and detectives are particularly keen to trace the movements of the perfume bottle picked up by Mr Rowley, which was used on 4 March 2018 in Salisbury and discovered by police in Amesbury on 27 June that year.

(c) Sky News 2019: Second Salisbury officer was poisoned by novichok, say police

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