An adult film star who gos by the name Nacho Vidal was arrested in Spain last week. Following an 11-month investigation into the death of fashion photographer Jose Luis Abad in July 2019, Vidal was charged with suspicion of manslaughter.
“The police operation began following the victim’s death during the celebration of a mystic ritual based on the inhalation of venom of the bufo alvarius toad,” Spanish police said in a statement, according to Yahoo! Finance.
After doing it to remedy his battle with depression and addiction, Vidal has reportedly advocated for inhaling the vapor from Colorado River toad venom. The adult film star, whose real name is Ignacio Jordà, claimed in a 2016 YouTube video that the effects of the venom helped him “reconnect with his soul” and “with the Earth and Mother Nature.” He went on to suggest that his friends also try the venom to “help them clean up their acts.”
The bufo alvarius toad–also known as the Colorado River toad–originates in northern Mexico and southwest United States, and secretes a venom containing a psychedelic substance known as 5-MeO-DMT. Its effects are comparable to the widely known hallucinogenic brew, ayahuasca.
Photographer Jose Luis Abad reportedly died in Vidal’s home, where investigators believe this ritual was being done regularly. The authorities add that the adult film star was preying on people who were “easily influenced, vulnerable or who were seeking help for illnesses or addictions using alternative methods.”
Vidal’s attorney, Daniel Salvador, said that Abad’s death was “an accident,” disputing the allegation that his client posed as a shaman who promoted the use of toad venom. Vidal ended up being detained, along with one of his relatives, and an employee.
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