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Sunday, 28 November, 1999, 15:08 GMT
Ex-servicemen 'duped' into toxic experiments
Porton Down Porton Down is the subject of a police probe

Welsh ex-servicemen who were "duped" into taking part in chemical warfare tests at Porton Down claim they are now ill as a result of the experiments.

They have told BBC Wales's Eye on Wales programme they were enticed into being guinea pigs at the Porton Down research centre by being offered both more pay and extra leave.

They had no idea they would be taking part in experiments involving highly toxic substances, they said.

Now, decades later, Wiltshire police are conducting a wide-ranging investigation into Porton Down centred on the death of airman Ronald Maddison.

Interview refused

Mr Maddison died at the research centre after being given the nerve agent Sarin in 1953.

Porton Down, which is now run by the Government's Defence Evaluation and Research Agency (DERA), refused to be interviewed about the claims.

Research material provided for the BBC Wales programme stated that tests would not have taken place if any long-term risk to an individual's health had been envisaged.

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