An innocent soldier was kicked out of the Army after a colleague swapped a drugs test sample, a court martial has heard.
Tests showed that John Warren-Beck had taken cocaine and despite his protests that he had done nothing wrong, his army career was ended prematurely.
The court martial was told that the sample was swapped by Lance Corporal Anthony Molloy - who had allegedly taken cocaine just days earlier.
Both men were members of the 2nd Battalion the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment when they gave the samples during a routine drugs test three years ago. Now L/C Molloy, 29, is facing a court martial after denying conduct prejudice of good order and military discipline by switching his compulsory drug testing urine sample with another.
Prosecuting at the hearing at Catterick Garrison, Captain Chris Adair said: “This was a deliberate attempt to evade the repercussions of a drugs test”.
Both men were tested at the Regiment’s headquarters at Fulwood Barracks, Preston, Lancs in August 2009
But former Kingsman Warren-Beck, 24, claimed he heard the NCO tell a sergeant shortly before the test that he had taken cocaine two days earlier.
Capt.Adair told the hearing: “This case is the result of the deliberate tampering of two drug test samples.”
The two men gave test samples when an Army drugs test team arrived at the barracks.
Both men gave samples at the same time and put them on a window sill.
But is alleged that instead of taking his own sample to be tested, Molloy took his colleagues.
And when the results came back it showed that cocaine was present in Warren-Beck’s sample and despite him protesting his innocence, he was kicked out of the Army just weeks later.
Capt.Adair said: “He was convinced that his sample had been swapped.”
In a bid to prove his innocence Mr.Warren-Beck had a DNA sample tested and it shod that it did not match the drug test sample. When Molloy was questioned he denied any wrong doing but agreed to a DNA test which tested positive with the sample containing cocaine.
In the denying the charge, said Captain Adair: “It appears the defendant is challenging most aspects of the prosecution’s case.”
Mr.Warren-Beck told the hearing that he was working with the Regimental recruiting team when he was called in for the drugs test.
Cross examined by Mr.Simon Reevell, defending, Mr.Warren-Beck admitted that at first he had suggested that the samples had been switched in error. He later blamed Molloy for switching the samples saying “I was being kicked out of the Army for something I had not done. I just wanted to clear my name.”