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WEF: soldiers test positive for cocaine use

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WEF: soldiers test positive for cocaine use
10:10 CET+01:00
Stray bullets, cocaine and cannabis. Not all of the soldiers on security detail during the World Economic Forum this week have had their eyes on the ball.

The small Swiss town of Davos goes into virtual lockdown during the annual World Economic Forum with federal authorities in Bern making provision for up to 5,000 armed forces personnel to assist local authorities during the talks.

This year around 700 troops from the Italian-speaking state of Ticino have been providing security for the event attended by guests including UK Prime Minister David Cameron, Hollywood actor and environmental activist Leonardo DiCaprio, and World Bank president Jim Yong Kim.

But a random drugs test on Tuesday of mountain troops from a battalion made up mainly of soldiers from Ticino and Graubünden saw seven soldiers testing positive for cannabis use. A further five tested positive for cocaine and cannabis consumption, regional daily Corriere del Ticino reports.

One soldier was also found to be in possession of three grams of cocaine during the spot checks. He was sent home immediately and faces possible criminal charges, NZZ reports.

The other soldiers who tested positive for cocaine were also sent home, the daily said.

And in even more worryingly news for authorities, it emerged that one soldier narrowly missed shooting one of his colleagues on Tuesday after he accidentally let off a stray bullet with his assault rifle.

The soldier was not injured in the incident but was said to be in a state of shock. He has also been complaining of hearing problems and tests will now be run to see if he has sustained permanent hearing damage.

Military authorities have opened an investigation into the shooting incident. It is not known whether drug use was involved.

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