A MAN in his 60s died of heart failure after long-term use of amphetamines, an inquest heard.

Roy Batten was found dead at a home in Camilla Close, Totton, on the evening of June 13, after suffering from heart problems.

Winchester Coroner’s Court heard Mr Batten’s health had been getting worse, and was living with friend so she could care for him.

The carer said the 61-year-old, of Parkside, Totton, had died in his sleep.

However, the inquest heard the Mr Batten’s carer was arrested following his death over concerns relating to missing end-of-life medicine and comments she had made.

DC Beth Ford, of Hampshire Constabulary’s major crime department, said a number of bottles of the medication had gone missing and that the carer had said “I was only trying to help him”, sparking concerns over how Mr Batten might have died.

No further action was taken by the police after a toxicology test found no evidence of the medication in his body. It was later clarified that the carer had been referring to a ‘bucket list’ of things Mr Batten wanted to do before his death, and some of the missing medication was recovered.

Police also discovered a jar containing 270g amphetamine powder – “quite a significant quantity”, according to DC Ford.

Home Office forensic pathologist Dr Amanda Jeffery added that a history of amphetamine use could have caused Mr Batten’s heart problems, which she described as “very severe”.

Recording a conclusion of death due to natural causes, senior coroner Grahame Short described Mr Batten’s death as “an unusual case in many ways”.

Mr Short said: “He knew he was terminally ill. The evidence shows that he did not want to go back into hospital. He disliked hospitals and doctors, and discharged himself on a number of occasions.

“Clearly [Mr Batten] was someone who wanted to embrace life as much as he could. I know that it can be very hard to watch somebody in those circumstances.”

Mr Short added that the death was confirmed the day after he was found, and the cause of death was heart failure, contributed to by amphetamine use.