Gosport Man Jailed For Selling Toxic Slimming Pills

29 June 2018, 18:13 | Updated: 29 June 2018, 18:14


The mother of a bulimic student who died after taking toxic slimming pills hopes the jailing of her dealer will be a deterrent to others.

Eloise Parry, 21, from Shrewsbury, died in hospital on April 12 2015 after taking tablets containing the poisonous Dinitrophenol (DNP).

Online steroid dealer Bernard Rebelo was sentenced to a total of seven years imprisonment at Inner London Crown Court on Friday.

The 31-year-old, from Gosport in Hampshire, was previously convicted of two counts of manslaughter and one of placing unsafe food on the market.

Speaking outside court Miss Parry's mother Fiona said she "never expected" to see anyone convicted for her daughter's death.

"It helps us as a family to come to terms with what has happened," she added.

"I am eternally grateful to the authorities for relentlessly pursuing justice on behalf of my daughter.

"In addition, the prison sentence given today is a clear message to others which I hope will act as a deterrent."

She said her daughter "died a traumatic and extremely unpleasant death" and that the company which allowed Rebelo's site to operate "was also responsible".

"Registrars are large, global corporations and as such have a duty to behave responsibly.

"What they do and what they allow others to do has consequences, in this case the death of my daughter."

Judge Jeremy Donne described Miss Parry as an "intelligent, articulate young woman who struggled with her mental health".

He told Rebelo: "She thought she had found in your so-called fat-burning capsules a magic solution for her distorted body-image and difficulties with bulimia nerviosa.

"She was of course quite wrong."

The judge said Rebelo had shown "no remorse at all" for causing her death.

"You indiscriminately supplied DNP, a highly toxic industrial chemical, via the internet," he added.

"You had no way of controlling who would purchase it, and it was highly likely that those with eating disorders - possibly even the very young and impressionable - would buy it."

Miss Parry's family sat together in court for the sentence.

Fiona Parry said her daughter had "many problems in life" but that there had been "positive signs that things were changing for the better".

She said her daughter had a number of plans for her future, including her degree, career and to travel the world.

"When Eloise died her life was undone and her possible future unravelled and in that moment the hope I had for her was also destroyed," she added.

Sister Rebecca Parry, 19, said in a statement read out during the trial that she had been "focused" on losing weight.

She said that in the weeks and months leading up to her death, her sister had struggled "more and more" with her eating disorder.

Miss Parry started taking the chemical in pill form in February 2015, and soon became addicted and dependent on the yellow powder in the capsules.

Rebelo admitted that he sold DNP to her but said he included a warning on his website that the substance was not for human consumption.

The profit he made was estimated to be more than £200,000.

Felicity Gerry QC, defending, described him as a "devoted family man" with a young child during her mitigation.

Rebelo's girlfriend Mary Roberts, 32, was previously cleared by the jury of money laundering after she was accused of transferring £20,000 for and on behalf of Rebelo.

She sat in the public gallery with a number of other family members and supporters.

DNP can cause multiple organ failure, hypothermia, nausea, coma, muscle rigidity, cardiac arrest and death.

Depending on body weight, just 200mg of DNP can be lethal.