Soldiers from covid test regiment had 'illegal lockdown party at barracks as group is tested in drug scandal'

SOLDIERS who held an 'illegal lockdown party' at a barracks on bonfire night have been hauled in for drug testing, a source has revealed.

The troops, part of the same regiment that has been drafted in to carry out Liverpool's mass testing programme, are believed to have held the party at Catterick Barrack in North Yorkshire.

If they test positive for drugs, they could face tough jail sentences and even be dismissed from the Army.

Their superiors are now waiting for the results, according to The Mirror.

It is believed 21 of the troops were at the bash on Thursday.

Reports indicate that they were summoned to answer questions after officers received tips of a secret “block party” which may have involved drugs at the barracks.

Two squadrons of around 200 soldiers from 32 Engineer Regiment are currently in Liverpool overseeing the mass testing operation.

Although officials are believed to have taken down all references of Liverpool from social media in a bid to manage the scandal, the troops have been seen in Merseyside for over a week now.

Sources at the Ministry of Defence have allegedly said that the soldiers who took part in Thursday’s party are from a different squadron within the regiment and that none of them was part of the mission in Liverpool.

The news comes as a massive scandal for the regiment, with senior officers said to be “absolutely disgusted that the rules have been breached”.

A source said: “If any are found to have taken drugs that night the book will be thrown at them, but it is bad enough that their regimental colleagues are on the frontline against Covid-19.

“Just by breaking the rules on social distancing so flagrantly they have tarnished the good work being done by their comrades in Liverpool.”

An investigation into the incident has since been launched by the Royal Military Police.

It has been claimed that the military police tried to catch the soldiers on the night of the incident, but they run away, with some hiding in cars parked within their North Yorkshire camp.

Other unsubstantiated claims suggest that one soldier tried to avoid being tested by slipping past the military police.

After the entire camp was put under lockdown on Friday, the soldiers were rounded up and put in a bus headed for a testing centre miles away.

While Army sources claim the results of the Compulsory Drug Test will be revealed within the next two weeks, it is understood by the Mirror that this could be sooner.

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