Former pop star Dane Bowers has been arrested in Croydon in connection with a police operation to shut down a mephedrone drug ring.
The former singer with Another Level was questioned by detectives on Tuesday and released on bail until January.
During the police inquiry, about £650,000 worth of mephedrone was discovered at an address in Manchester.
Detectives from Greater Manchester Police were tipped off that the illegal substance was being sold at cage-fighting events run by KnuckleUp, the Sun reported. KnuckleUp, a cage fighting promoters with which Mr Bowers is associated, is based in Purley.
Police also arrested five other men and women aged between 25 and 46 in Manchester on Tuesday morning.
Mr Bowers, who lives in Croydon, has close ties to the cage-fighting scene and has been prominent in recent efforts to bring the martial art into the mainstream.
An associate of Mr Bowers’, Matthew Hand, said KnuckleUp would contest allegations of any wrongdoing, and that their solicitors are currently preparing a statement.
A spokesperson for Greater Manchester Police said: “On Tuesday 16 November 2010 officers from Greater Manchester Police arrested seven people on suspicion of conspiring to supply drugs.
“A 30-year-old man from Croydon, a 31-year-old man from Somerset, a 25-year-old woman from Bolton and a 46-year-old man from Staffordshire were bailed until 11 January 2011.”
Three people arrested as part of the operation appeared at Manchester City Magistrates Court yesterday morning. Asaf Mahmood, 32, of Salford; Mohammed Ikram Kibria, 28, of Rochdale; and Shiraz Shah, 28, of Whalley Range, were remanded in custody.
Additional reporting by Charlie Cooper.