Aussie Accused of Washing Hair in Liquid Ecstasy

By Luke Walker 11/21/11

Bungling border guards thought MDMA was present in an Australian's shampoo bottles. They were wrong.

thefix_Neil Parry.jpg
Neil Parry has some cause for complaint.
Photo via

An Australian man with a passing resemblance to Crocodile Dundee star Paul Hogan spent three days in jail last year after Aussie border agents accused him of smuggling 1.6 kg of liquid ecstasy into the country—cunningly disguised in bottles of Pantene Pro V shampoo and conditioner. Actually, the bottles really did contain innocent hair product. Now, after 17 months of legal battles, Neil Parry has been awarded $100,000 in damages for the false arrest—most of which will simply cover his legal costs. Australian authorities sheepishly confess that they bungled the shampoo analysis, which they originally said tested positive for MDMA, the active compound in ecstasy. "Mistakes were made during the presumptive testing of Mr. Parry's goods," (under)states an official, who claims that new procedures have since been introduced. Ecstasy isn't known for being ingested through the scalp. Parry's boat was searched during the investigation, as were the homes of two of his friends. Procter & Gamble, makers of the Pro V hair care line, declined to comment.

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