User Login    
 + Register
PDQ Cleaning
News : Drug Bust Results in 24 Thousand Packets Of Drugs
Posted by Randy on 2013/10/24 6:10:00 (914 reads) News by the same author

(KansasCity.com)- Despite the growing recognition of its dangerous side effects, the synthetic marijuana industry has been able to keep a step ahead of law enforcement efforts to stop its open sale.

Click to see original Image in a new window

That ended in a big way in the Kansas City area Tuesday, as police officers swept across the metropolitan area in a coordinated attack on those who traffic in the drug.

The raids resulted from investigations that began as far back as mid-2012 — inquiries that were prolonged by complicated lab tests that had to be conducted on the ever-evolving substances commonly called K2 or spice.

About a dozen local, state and federal law enforcement agencies took part in Tuesday’s operation, which targeted gas stations, convenience stores and other businesses selling the substances.

Officers served 45 search warrants in the Kansas City area and Topeka and made 31 arrests. By midafternoon Tuesday, about 24,000 individual packets of drugs had been seized along with more that $100,000 in cash.

What is K2? Click here for more information

“This is just the beginning of the operation,” said Assistant Jackson County Prosecutor Michael Hunt. “Our goal is to stop the trafficking of this illegal drug. We’ve had kids put in the hospital and who have died from this.”

The substances are typically sold as colorfully named and packaged products, often labeled as incense or potpourri. They are readily available online, and as Tuesday’s police action showed, at a number of retail establishments.

The drugs are often marked as “not for human consumption,” but they are typically smoked and purportedly mimic the effects of marijuana. But a number of serious health problems and deaths across the country have been attributed to ingestion of the substances, which has prompted the efforts to make them illegal.

Lawmakers in Kansas and Missouri have passed laws to criminalize the chemicals used to produce the substances, but producers of the drugs thwarted those efforts by tweaking their chemical formulas just enough to skirt those laws.

But both states have now passed broader legislation to encompass the whole class of chemicals used to make K2.

Tuesday’s sweep was months in the planning, according to law enforcement officials.

At 11 a.m. Tuesday, Kansas City, Kan., police served search warrants at eight businesses and three private homes, including one in Lenexa. The affected businesses were shut down while officers processed the scenes for evidence.

Gladstone police targeted three businesses in their city. Topeka police said they also served warrants at eight businesses in their area.

Kansas City, Kan., Police Detective Darren Koberlein said Tuesday’s action was the culmination of an investigation that began in June 2012.

But unlike more traditional drug investigations where officers can conduct field tests to detect the presence of cocaine or marijuana and make an immediate arrest, the investigation into K2 requires more detailed laboratory testing that can take months to complete, Koberlein said.

Dan Cummings, officer in charge of the Jackson County Drug Task Force, said that an investigation in conjunction with Independence police started on the Missouri side at the beginning of 2013.

Cummings said that the base chemicals used to manufacture the substances are illegally imported from Asia. The packages being sold to users typically cost about $10 per gram, he said.

Said Hunt, the prosecutor: “As the size of today’s operation indicates, a lot of money is changing hands.”

Koberlein said that the types of the drugs being sold today are much more potent than marijuana and the types of K2 seen just a few years ago.

He said they are targeted to teenagers and young adults, and a number of bad reactions and overdoses have been documented.

“It’s just disgusting,” he said of some of the effects he’s seen on users.

Reported side effects include elevated heart rate and blood pressure, seizures, kidney damage and heart attacks. A study by the American Psychiatric Association found that some users of K2 and substances like it end up suffering “prolonged psychotic episodes” that include paranoid delusions and visual and auditory hallucinations.

Last week, a Gladstone teenager pleaded guilty to causing the Platte County traffic crash death of a woman that occurred last October while he was under the influence of synthetic marijuana.

The death of 25-year-old Ashley R. Miller in that wreck has also prompted a wrongful-death lawsuit against the driver, 18-year-old Logan T. Pope, and the owners of the Gladstone smoke shop where he allegedly bought the synthetic marijuana.

Officials said Tuesday that investigations into the sale of the substances is continuing, and said they hoped it would send a message to others who think it’s OK to sell the drugs.

“If you’re selling this stuff, we’re coming after you,” Hunt said.

Printer Friendly Page Send this Story to a Friend Create a PDF from the article


Other articles
2014/8/1 10:31:07 - Flower Show Winners Announced At Fair
2014/8/1 10:29:39 - Rabbit And Poultry Winners Announced At Fair
2014/8/1 7:45:39 - Analyzing Amendment One - The Right to Farm
2014/8/1 7:26:56 - Voter Turnout Projected At 27 Percent In Missouri
2014/8/1 6:23:41 - Unionville Man Injured In Motorcycle Accident
2014/8/1 4:43:54 - Body Found In Holt County In Northwest Missouri
2014/8/1 4:35:13 - Missouri Man Gets 15 Years For Identity Theft
2014/8/1 4:28:06 - Missouri Man Sentenced To Prison For Trafficking Fake DVDs
2014/8/1 4:23:32 - Police: Teen Raped On Lawn At Keith Urban Show
2014/8/1 4:20:58 - Disturbing Video Shows Teens Setting Themselves On Fire In Trend Called "Fire Challenge"
2014/8/1 4:11:25 - Lab Walks 30 Miles To Previous Owner, But Family Won't Take Dog Back
2014/8/1 4:07:35 - Man, Grandson Dead After More Than 90 Shots Fired At Home
2014/8/1 4:02:54 - Colorado To Issue Driver's Licenses To Immigrants
2014/8/1 3:57:24 - Country Showdown Begins At 7:30 Tonight At NCM Fair
2014/7/31 9:47:23 - Trenton Teen Injured In Accident Northeast Of Trenton
2014/7/31 9:44:23 - Water Treatment Process To Change In Trenton
2014/7/31 9:41:48 - Albany Woman Killed In Accident On Highway 136
2014/7/31 9:38:53 - Pilot Makes Emergency Landing At Trenton
2014/7/31 4:37:39 - Missouri Man Arrested For Photographs Of Babies, Toddlers Being Molested
2014/7/31 4:22:38 - Employees Turn Away Special Needs Children From Some Carnival Rides
2014/7/31 4:18:02 - Jail Escapee Caught Asleep On Sedalia Couch
2014/7/31 4:13:29 - Missouri Woman Who Poisoned Family Could Face Two Juries
2014/7/31 4:09:05 - Bicyclist Says Sunset Hills Mayor Swerved Car Into Him; Mayor Has Different Story
2014/7/31 4:04:20 - Kansas Girl Nearly Strangled By Utility Line
2014/7/30 8:51:06 - Today Is The Deadline For Absentee Ballot Requests
2014/7/30 8:49:03 - Trenton Residents To Receive Higher Electric Bills
2014/7/30 8:41:52 - Trenton Resident Charged With Possession Of Meth
2014/7/30 8:39:49 - Chillicothe Police Department Announces The Hiring Of New Officer
2014/7/30 8:36:56 - Smoke Testing To Resume In Trenton Today
2014/7/30 5:55:53 - Shelby Lowrey Of Laredo Crowned NCM Fair Queen



Bookmark this article at these sites

                   

Listen to KTTN-FM