It must rank as the most bizarre day of my 30-year career.Before I take you behind the high walls of this closely-guarded community, however, it's worth remembering how an obscure Indian civil servant's son rose to control a vast spiritual fiefdom, with its own ministers and laws, and even its own currency, the Raam.However, as the last writer to have been granted an audience with the enigmatic Maharishi - and, indeed, the only journalist to have been invited inside the strange "alternative nation" where he lived his final years in reclusion - I know who I tend to believe.
But however well he plays the part, there is nothing in the least glamorous about Curtis Francis Warren, who has just completed two-thirds of his 16-year sentence fordrugtrafficking and the killing of a Turkish fellow inmate in the Hoorn prison in Holland. This is a determined, ruthless career criminal who has been called 'the richest and most successful British criminal who has ever been caught'. This over-prescribed drug is becoming a staple in parents’ medicine cabinets, making it much easier for teens to access. Around school, however, it’s referred to as “bars,” “zanies” or “planks” and used to get a feeling similar to intoxication.These two factors play a large role in a potential overdose.With a drug that’s wearing off and a user with an impaired memory, the probability of taking one too many rises dramatically.