Spanish Porn Star Arrested After Man Dies During 'Mystical' Toad Venom Ritual

Spanish porn star Nacho Vidal is under investigation for manslaughter after a man died during a ceremony involving toad venom.
Vidal and two other individuals were arrested on May 29, according to his lawyer, David Salvador.

They were arrested on suspicion of manslaughter and following an 11-month investigation, according to a statement from Spain's law enforcement agency, the Guardia Civil.

They appeared before a judge on the same day, a spokesman for the supreme court of Valencia told CNN.

All three were released provisionally and investigations continue, according to the spokesman.

Police have not named the man who died. The names of the two other people -- a man and a woman -- who were arrested along with Vidal have not been made public.

The Bufo alvarius toad, pictured here in a stock image, is found in Arizona, New Mexico and Mexico.

Salvador told CNN the death was a "tragic accident" and that his client was not responsible.

He said the person who died had used the toad venom before and had wanted to experience it again.

The individual attended the ritual organized by Vidal and the two other people, the Guardia Civil said.

Police said the incident took place in July 2019 in the town of Enguera, near Valencia, in eastern Spain.

The person died during what the Guardia Civil called a "mystical ritual involving the inhalation of venomous vapors from the Bufo alvarius toad."

Also known as the Colorado River toad or the Sonoran Desert toad, the amphibian releases a venom called 5-MeO-DMT, which is known to have hallucinogenic effects, according to the Addiction Center website

The toads grow to 18 centimeters or more, making them one of the largest native toads in North America, according to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum.

The species is found from central Arizona to southwestern New Mexico and the Mexican state of Sinaloa.

The Guardia Civil said that those arrested carried out the rituals on a regular basis for therapeutic and medicinal purposes.

The law enforcement agency said the practice posed a serious health risk, but the dangers were masked by "what looked like an inoffensive ancestral ritual."

However, Salvador denied that his client took part in regular rituals. He said Vidal had some friends who knew how it worked and he had taken it a few times.

Vidal, aged 46, has appeared in at least 10,000 scenes, in a porn career spanning 26 years, according to his website.