Melbourne DEA raid nets 22,000 packets of synthetic marijuana


It’s been touted as the first nationwide crackdown on synthetic drugs.

 

drug Enforcement Administration raided a Brevard Countyindustrial complex Wednesday, federal and local agents revealed details Thursday about what they found.

Melbourne police and Brevard County deputies accompanied Drug Enforcement Administration agents in Wednesday’s raid at the complex on Dusa Drive.

Six warrants were served. Agents took away 22,000 packets of synthetic marijuana, which they said was being made at the facility.

They also found 8,000 packets of bath salts, along with potpourri used to infuse a number of chemicals to make the synthetic drug.

“These synthetic drugs are effectively marketed as bath salts, spice and incense, and even plant food,” said Jim Chaparro from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Nationally agents said one kilogram can produce $750,000 in retail profit.

Tim Reed, who works nearby, said the operation has been running for about a year.

“They had cement mixers out back, and they’d be running and they’d put those ingredients in, and they’re spraying something in there, in cement mixers,” said Reed. “They are probably still out of the back door of the place.”

Neighboring workers said most days, they heard the rumble of cement mixers around back. They reported smelling raspberry and other aromas in the air, and saw more than a dozen workers going inside the business daily.

Seven people were arrested on non-related drug charges and taken away in U.S. Border Patrol vehicles.

Since Wednesday’s bust, it was revealed that it was part of a much larger crackdown called “Operation Log Jam,” being conducted by the DEA alongside state and local agencies in Florida and several other states.

Two hundred sixty-five search warrants were executed in 90 cities in 30 states as part of the operation.

A total of 29 suspected manufacturing facilities were raided, including the one in Melbourne.

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