Feds’ Sweeping Southern California Bath Salts Bust Snares Seven Orange Countians

Seven Orange Countians are among those caught up in a federal government crackdown on synthetic drugs known as “spice” and “bath salts,” officials recently revealed.

Accused Bath Salts Drug Dealer From Newport Coast Keeps Striking Out

The locals were among two of three organizations charged in Los Angeles federal court with allegedly making and distributing thousands of kilograms of synthetic cannabinoids, which are designed to mimic the effects of THC and are sold under brand names such as “Sexy Monkey,” “Crazy Monkey,” “Scooby Snax,” “Bizarro” and “Mad Hatter,” according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.

“These are extremely dangerous drugs, despite being falsely marketed to youth as being a ‘safe’ alternative and having innocent names like spice and K2,” said Eileen M. Decker, the U.S. Attorney in Los Angeles. “The often unknown and constantly changing chemicals in these drugs can have unpredictable and devastating effects on users.”

Ahmad Abu Farie, 54, his 25-year-old son Mohammad Abu Farie, both of Huntington Beach, and a second son, Ehab Abu Farie, 24, of Chandler, Arizona, were among seven people charged with being part of a company in downtown LA’s Skid Row district that sold the compounds that are smoked or swallowed.

A separate Orange County business involved in the same, according to the feds, included Adnan Bahhur, 55, and his sons Islam Bahhur, 29, and Hakeem Bahhur, 24, all of Anaheim, Adnan Bahhur’s 44-year-old daughter Maesa Bahhur of Greenville, South Carolina, Anaheim’s Oun Alrzouq, 49, and Mohamad Hamade, 31, of Irvine.

A third case focuses on two former Monterey Park residents who allegedly had ties to the other two organizations. Most defendants are charged with conspiracy to manufacture, possess with intent to distribute, and distribute controlled substance analogues, a charge that carries a sentence of up to 20 years in federal prison, according to prosecutors.

Could be the makings of the longest family reunions EVER!

Drug incident reinforces ongoing spice, bath salts problem

“Seven Mesa High students taken to hospital.”
You might’ve seen that headline recently. It reinforces an ongoing problem in our state, a problem one legislator attempted to address last session, only to be shot down.
That problem is “spice” or “bath salts,” legal substances that kids increasingly are consuming, substances that provide those kids the high they’re looking for, substances that have resulted in hospitalizations, some for long-term psychiatric problems, and even deaths.
So why do bath salts and spice remain legal? Two answers, at least for Arizona.
One is the way the makers of spice keep ahead of the law. What happens is this: A product is put out there, it results in the kinds of problems outlined above, and then the state outlaws the chemical compound that creates that product.
The chemists making the product then alter the compound, and suddenly they have another “legal” substance to sell.
This is the history of bath salts since their inception, the law always behind the chemists’ ability to alter their concoctions to keep them legal.
Hospital emergency rooms increasingly treat kids high on these bath salts, kids who legally purchase them at convenience stores or head shops. Kids are quickly addicted to the substances, which can induce paranoia, panic attacks, sudden mood swings and reckless behavior, not to mention rapid heartbeat over an extended time, chest pains, and, in some cases, heart attacks.
So in the last legislative session, State Sen. Linda Gray introduced a bill that would give the state more power over these drugs.
Currently, here’s how the system works in Arizona: The state identifies a substance, but if the Legislature hasn’t banned that particular combination of chemicals, the state must wait until the Legislature convenes and passes a law specifically outlawing that combination.
Which means? For months at a time, law enforcement cannot go after substances the Legislature hasn’t banned (unless the federal government has first).
In response to that dilemma, Sen. Gray introduced this bill:
“It would give the Arizona State Board of Pharmacy power to add chemicals to its controlled-substances list without legislative approval to ban chemicals used in new bath-salts derivations without waiting for lawmakers to return to session and pass a bill banning the new versions.”
The bill also “required board members to consult with a Department of Public Safety forensic scientist, who typically would identify new drugs for legislators and ensure chemicals met certain criteria before they could be banned.”
Sounds reasonable, right? Give the experts the power to ban in real time the chemicals used in the latest synthetic drug formulas, but with the same oversight by the DPS used by legislators to craft laws to ban specific chemicals. Plus, it allows those drugs to be outlawed at any time; as is, it takes a bill passed by the Legislature to enact bans.
Not good enough for Gilbert state legislator Eddie Farnsworth, and enough House Republicans, however. Because when the bill reached the House floor, it got deep-sixed.
Farnsworth, who helped lead the charge against the bill, believed it gave too much power to the State Board of Pharmacy, believing it violated separation of power.
Said Farnsworth, “What we have to be very careful of is that we don’t decide that somehow the ends of trying to prevent people from committing crimes is going to justify the means of destroying the protections we have in the Constitution.”
I’m not sure just what “protections” are threatened by Gray’s bill, but I do know this:
The bills Farnsworth voted for — the ones that have banned specific chemical compounds — came from . . . wait for it, wait for it . . . the Arizona State Board of Pharmacy.
Maybe Gray will once again introduce her perfectly reasonable bill in January. And probably Farnsworth will once again be successful in shooting it down. But certainly more kids will be damaged by their use of bath salts, apparently a fair exchange for saving Farnsworth’s Constitutional “protections.”

Dangers of bath salts

Angelenos, consider yourselves warned: That designer synthetic drug known as “bath salts” is dangerous.
The official caution came today from The Los Angeles County Health Officer, who released a warning against the use of “bath salts.” (Oh, and bee-tee-dubs, drugs in general are bad!)
Jonathan E. Fielding, MD, MPH, Director of Public Health and Health Officer on the issue:
“Bath salts are particularly dangerous in that not much is known about what goes into the drug and even less is known about what people are capable of while on this drug. We do know that there are harmful risks to users, and there is an increased potential for others to be harmed if someone near them is high on this drug. All illicit drug use should be avoided.”
The drug has alternate names on the street, including White Lightning, White Rush, and Hurricane Charlie. Incidentally, the drug “bath salts” are in no way affiliated withe the stuff that smells like lavender or tangerine that your pour into your tub to soak away a stressful day. You can sometimes pick up “bath salts” at smoke shops (not, say, the Bath & Body Works at the mall).
Health officials describe what can happen to a “bath salts” user:
Other side effects of “bath salts” use include sweating, chest pain, rapid heart rate, hallucinations, violent behavior, and mental illness. Symptoms of “bath salts” abuse can include lack of appetite, decreased need for sleep, self-mutilation, and severe paranoia.
One possible example of “bath salts” abuse is bank executive Brian Mulligan, who confessed to a Glendale Police Department officer he had used the drug about 20 times and was having trouble with paranoia. Mulligan subsequently went on to have a couple of struggles with Los Angeles Police Department officers, and is now trying to sue them. Mulligan’s alleged use of “bath salts” may have influenced his behavior in his encounters with authorities.

Ban on ‘Spice’ and ‘Bath Salts’ extended in Yavapai County pending trial

CAMP VERDE — Late Monday, Yavapai County Superior Court Judge Michael Bluff extended the ban on the Yavapai County sale of “novelty powders” and other synthetics called “spice” and “bath salts” by known retailers.

In a 14-page ruling, Judge Bluff affirmed a permanent injunction against nine of the 12 retail shops named in the complaint filed by Yavapai County Attorney Sheila Polk. The judge further issued a preliminary injunction against the remaining three known retailers: Wes Lance Trading Company, Steve Ogden and the Island Store.

Retailers in Prescott that have been banned from selling the novelty powders are Prescott Quick Stop, Mike’s Mini Mart, and The Island Store. Shops in Cottonwood banned from the sale of these drugs are Hawaiian Honey Swimwear and Pipe Dreamz Smoke Shop. Shops in Prescott Valley that are banned are X-Hale Smoke Shop, Mario’s PV Quick Stop, the Hobby Glass, Smoke N’ Thingz, Mike’s Connection and Texaco on Highway 69. Wes Lance Trading Company in Camp Verde has also been banned.

“What is so important is that parents and their children, as well as all community members, understand how dangerous and life-threatening these synthetic drugs are,” said Yavapai County Attorney Sheila Polk. “I knew this stuff was horrible when we started the trial, yet I was still overwhelmed with the testimony recounting the violence and self-destruction, and how these drugs are effecting everyone across the county.”

This ruling comes after three days of Superior Court testimony in late August. Among his findings, Judge Bluff wrote that novelty powder drugs are synthetic cannabinoids and synthetic cathinones that have effects similar to marijuana and methamphetamine, but more intense, unpredictable, dangerous and addictive. The judge further found that the novelty powders are packaged to mimic the appearance and names of recreational illegal drugs, and despite the warnings on the packages that they are “not for human consumption,” they are sold solely for human consumption.

The street names include: Go Fast, K2, Spice, Sprinklezz, Incense, Potpourri, Herbal Sachets, Glass Cleaner, Felt Cleaner, Go Fast Carpet Cleaner, Exuberance Powder, Tickle Talc, Bath Salts, Smokin’ Dragon, Mr. Nice Guy, Fear and Loathing, Diablo, Amped, G6, Eight Ballz, White Lightening, Crazy Train, Hashish 6X, Token Monkey, Black Gold 20X, Legal Devil, Funky Green Stuff, and Bliss.

In issuing the injunctions, the judge found that evidence at the hearing showed that the novelty powders cause serious physical and mental harm to the users, including dangerous increases in metabolic rates resulting in dangerous hyperthermia (overheating), increased heart rate, stroke, cardiovascular collapse, seizures, and death.

The judge found that users often suffer from delusions and hallucinations, exhibiting signs of severe psychosis, paranoia and anxiety, and that users will often suffer long-term effects from the drugs such as psychosis, depression, insomnia, suicide ideation and self-mutilation.

The judge observed that users under the influence of synthetic cannabinoids and cathinones will often engage in aggressive acts of violence against medical and law enforcement personnel trying to assist them, and innocent bystanders; and that synthetic cannabinoids and cathinones may be even more addictive than marijuana or methamphetamine.

The judge found that the evidence from the hearing shows that novelty powders are having a serious and negative impact on emergency medical services in Yavapai County and that the emergency medical professionals of the community report a dramatic increase over the last eighteen months in patients needing emergency medical treatment.

Among his findings, the judge noted: the evidence shows that the patients are often physically injured due to acts of self-harm, and that they are violently combative; that as many as 20 patients a week are presenting at Yavapai County’s three emergency rooms for treatment due to ingestion; that patients under the influence of novelty powders are violently combative, “out of their minds,” and that violent attacks on paramedics, doctors and nurses are common with such patients; that it is frequently necessary for hospital personnel to physically restrain, sedate, and intubate patients in order to treat the patient and eliminate danger to hospital personnel; and that these patients represent a serious drain of hospital and community resources available for medical emergencies.

The judge found there is a strong likelihood Yavapai County will prevail on the merits, and ruled that the sale of novelty powders presents a likelihood of irreparable injury to the people of Yavapai County. The judge declared that public policy favors the ban.

A copy of the Preliminary and Permanent Injunctions, as well as all the pleadings and affidavits, can be found at the Yavapai County Attorney’s website at http://www.yavapai.us/coatty/press-releases/court-pleadings-bath-salt-ban/.

The Yavapai County Attorney’s Office asks that community members with information about anyone selling synthetic drugs in Yavapai County contact the office at (928) 771-3344 and ask to speak with Maggie.

Bath Salt Drug WAR “Waist Of Money”

One definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

In 1914, Congress made heroin and cocaine illegal. That law didn’t stop the use of heroin or cocaine, and any teenager can show you where to buy heroin or coke at the local high school.

In 1920, Congress made liquor illegal. That law didn’t stop the use of liquor. Anybody in town could show you where the local speakeasy was if you wanted to buy a shot of booze.

In 1937, Congress made marijuana illegal. That law didn’t stop the use of marijuana, and any teenager can show you where to buy marijuana at the local high school.

In 2012, Arizona made “spice” and “bath salts” illegal. Of course, that didn’t stop the use of spice or bath salts and, again, ask your teenager if you want to know where to purchase these illegal drugs.

Sure, using drugs is stupid, but thinking the government can prevent people from using drugs that make them feel good is even stupider.

For the past 100 years, the drug war has been a dismal failure. It’s time to end the drug war and stop treating recreational use of drugs as a criminal problem. The insane drug war is just a huge waste of money that doesn’t work.

Read more: http://www.azcentral.com/arizonarepublic/opinions/articles/2012/09/05/20120905-drug-war-waste-of-funds.html#ixzz268JDf25J

Attention All Readers – You Must Know

All yellow Porsche 997 Turbo

First i would like to thank each and every reader that has made our blog one of the largest if not the largest for herbal incense and bath salt reviews and news. I have had so many emails these past 2 months asking me if you can buy herbal incense products from me. I just dont have time to email every request back that i get and i never want a reader to think that we are not interacting with you.

Here is the facts, we do not in any way shape or form sell herbal incense products. We are simply a resource for information in the herbal incense spice world. We enjoy giving readers information about the herbal incense spice busts and the incense industy reviews on herbal products. I know that the DEA and law enforcement has cracked down hard on several business across the USA over the past 2 months and now herbal incense is much harder to find.

I know this because everyday i get all the news and busts from our large database of resources and news streams. But i want to make it very clear we are only a resource for learning everything there is to know about herbal incense and news. We do not sell, stock, or tell clients where to buy herbal products or bath salts. If a client sends us a sample of there herbal incense products and its a legal product, we will review that product and write a post to edcuate the public on what we feel about that product. Keep in mind everyone has a different opion about herbal products and everything in life.

Here is an example, i have a freind of mine that bought a brand new porsche and its an amazing car. But that car is bright yellow and to me its screams UGLY. Now everyone else might just love yellow porsches, but i cant stand yellow cars. Now if i was to write a review about that bright yellow car i would say what a nice ride but bad choice in the cars color. Lets say i posted a pic it here

Now how many of you think this yellow porsche 997 turbo is amazing? Well when i look at it i just see a yellow BEE.

So my point is that everyone does not agree on everything. Many times when i post about a herbal incense i have tried i do my best to insure that i let people know just how strong there herbal spice is. Well to me – a daily smoker, its not as strong as someone that might only smoke once a month. Thats why i do my best to be honest so that my readers know what there getting before they get it. But thats only my opion. If i here of any great websites selling wholesale herbal incense i will make a post and update you and try to do a mass email on all the requests that i get for it.

But honstly i dont like to tell people where to buy any products, just give you a review of what i tried what my personal opion is of that product and where i got it from.
Hope this helps and as always thanks for all the support from our readers. It really is awesome. We have over 300,000 visits per week and thats truly amazing!

Fall River mayor seeks bath salt ban

FALL RIVER, Mass. (WPRI) — The mayor of Fall River is seeking to eliminate the sale of synthetic drugs in Massachusetts retail stores.

Drugs such as synthetic cathinones, otherwise known as bath salts, and synthetic cannabinoids, or synthetic marijuana, are currently available for sale across the state, and when abused can mimmick the effects of illegal drugs such as cocaine.

These substances have already been banned in 45 states after an expeditious rise in popularity, which resulted in a wave of deaths, including recently in Vermont.

Mayor Will Flanagan has now asked the Fall River City Council to bring his draft ordinance before the ordinance committee for review. Back in May, U.S. Senator Jack Reed announced a push to ban the chemicals across the country. Since they’re not meant for human consumption, the synthetic drugs are not categorized as food, food supplements or drugs, and without classification there’s no regulatory body overseeing their sale.

The ordinance would grant enforcement power to the police, and impose a fine of $300 for anyone caught using, as well as selling and displaying the products.

Bangor man who witnessed friend’s fatal stabbing arrested for bath salts, heroin possession

BANGOR, Maine — A resident of First Street who witnessed his childhood friend get mortally stabbed in front of his apartment in May was caught last week with heroin and the synthetic drug bath salts, police Sgt. Paul Edwards said Monday.

Eugene “Shawn” Cox, 40, told police his truck malfunctioned at about 3:15 p.m. Thursday when he crashed it into several trees by the Bangor police station. The crash was witnessed by Officer Joe Baillargeon, who had just arrived.

“He saw this blue pickup truck hit a couple trees,” then stop in its tracks, Edwards said. “Mr. Cox said he thought he lost a piece of his steering component and he couldn’t steer.”

After the collision, “we were all looking out the window,” the sergeant said, referring to himself and his co-workers at the station.

Cox was sweating and acting nervously and that alerted Baillargeon, who along with Officer Kevin Haefele found a knife in a holster on his waist and a push-button switchblade in his pocket, according to Edwards.

“He also had some plastic baggies, one that tested positive for MDPV [methylenedioxypyrovalerone] — bath salts,” Edwards said.

A second baggie contained heroin, a test confirmed, the sergeant said.

Cox was charged with possession of synthetic hallucinogenic drugs, unlawful possession of scheduled drugs and trafficking in dangerous knives.

He was taken to the Penobscot County Jail and later released.

Cox said he was upstairs in his apartment on First Street at about 1:45 a.m. on May 22 when he heard his friend Andy D. Smith, 38, arguing with a woman he once lived with out in the street when another woman intervened.

The second woman, who lives next door at 71 First St., “came out with a two-by-four and she hit him,” apparently in defense of the first woman, Cox told the Bangor Daily News.

“He got the two-by-four away from her and she called for her friends. They all started on him.”

Seconds later, Smith was bleeding from a wound to his left rib area and was trying to get away. Cox did not see who stabbed his friend, whom he had met in middle school.

“I ran down with a pipe” and met a bleeding Smith at the bottom of the steps, he said.

The last thing Smith said to his longtime friend was “to tell his kids that he loved them,” Cox said.

Jason Alan Trickett, 41, admitted to police that he stabbed Smith, whom he described as a friend, and now is facing manslaughter charges.

Smith, who is survived by his wife and two children, died after he was taken to Eastern Maine Medical Center.

Rudy Eugene’s Toxicology Report: Experts speculate on what caused ‘face-chewing’ attack

CBS/AP) MIAMI – Experts are still speculating about what may have caused Rudy Eugene’s face-chewing attack on Ronald Poppo in Miami last month. A toxicology report on Wednesday failed to find “bath salts” and other major street drugs in Eugene’s system.

Pictures: Fla. police identify “face-eating” naked man

The Miami-Dade County Medical Examiner said in a news release that the toxicology detected marijuana but it didn’t find any other street drugs, alcohol or prescription drugs. Eugene also tested negative for adulterants commonly mixed with street drugs.

An expert on toxicology testing said marijuana alone wasn’t likely to cause behavior as strange as Eugene’s.

“The problem today is that there is an almost an infinite number of chemical substances out there that can trigger unusual behavior,” said Dr. Bruce Goldberger, Professor and Director of Toxicology at the University of Florida.

There has been much speculation about what drugs, if any, would lead to the bizarre May 26 attack at a Miami causeway that left Poppo, 65, missing about 75 percent of his face. The tests ruled out the suggestion that 35-year-old Eugene may have been under the influence of bath salts, which mimic the effects of cocaine or methamphetamine and have been associated with bizarre crimes in recent months.

An outside forensic toxicology lab, which took a second look at the results, also confirmed the absence of bath salts, synthetic marijuana and LSD.

Goldberger said the medical examiner’s office in Miami is known for doing thorough work and he’s confident they and the independent lab covered as much ground as possible. But it’s nearly impossible for toxicology testing to keep pace with new formulations of synthetic drugs.

“There are many of these synthetic drugs that we currently don’t have the methodology to test on, and that is not the fault of the toxicology lab. The challenge today for the toxicology lab is to stay on top of these new chemicals and develop methodologies for them but it’s very difficult and very expensive.” Goldberger said. “There is no one test or combination of tests that can detect every possible substance out there.”

An addiction expert said she wouldn’t rule out marijuana causing the agitation.

“It could have been the strain of marijuana that increases the dopamine in the brain, such as sativa,” said Dr. Patricia Junquera, assistant professor at the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

There are two strains of marijuana called sativa and indica. The sativa increases dopamine and gives you energy while decreasing pain threshold. Indica is a “sleepy high,” she explained.

“People don’t really know what the amount of either is in each little packet of marijuana,” she explained. “And we can’t differentiate between the two in the blood, much less in a dead person.”

She also suggested that if Eugene had a mental disorder, “the marijuana could have increased even further the dopamine levels and aggravated the situation. So that can’t be ruled out.”

Eugene’s friends and family have said he was religious, not violent and that he didn’t drink or do drugs harder than marijuana, so they are baffled as to what caused Eugene’s brutal assault against the homeless victim.

“There’s no answer for it, not really,” said Marckenson Charles, Eugene’s younger brother. “Anybody who knew him knows this wasn’t the person we knew him to be. Whatever triggered him, there is no answer for this.”

Charles said the family does not plan to pursue any legal action against the police for shooting Eugene on the day of the face-chewing attack. Surveillance video from a nearby building shows Eugene stripping Poppo and pummeling him. The police officer who shot Eugene to death reportedly said Eugene growled at the officer when he told him to stop.

“They used the force they felt was necessary even if we don’t agree with that,” Charles said.

He said Eugene has been buried.

Poppo has undergone several surgeries and remains hospitalized. His left eye was removed, but doctors said earlier this month they were trying to find a way to restore vision in his right eye. He will need more surgeries before he can explore the options for reconstructing his face, doctors have said.

Heartbroken mothers and city’s emergency room doctors praise Gov. Cuomo’s crackdown on synthetic pot and bath salts

Gov. Cuomo is keeping the heat on the little guys in the big war against designer drugs.
This is welcome news to city emergency room doctors who have been rescuing way too many teenagers showing up with heart palpitations, hallucinations, high blood pressure and anxiety from synthetic pot and bath salts.
“Anything you can do to make these drugs a little more unreachable is a good thing,” said Dr. Lewis Nelson of NYU Medical Center. “The belief is that if it’s sold in a store, not by a corner drug dealer how bad can it be? This won’t stop people from using it all together, like any drug. But it will make people think twice.”
Cuomo’s move was also music to the ears of mothers like Deirdre Canaday of upstate New York, whose 26 year-old son, Aaron, never woke up after smoking a packet of “Mr. Nice Guy” in September.
And to Karen Dobner of Illinois, whose mild-mannered son, Max, 19, bought some iAroma at a mall and was so out of his mind after smoking it, he drove 100 mph through his suburban Chicago neighborhood and crashed through a house killing himself on impact.
“Good for Gov. Cuomo,” Dobner said. “[If] you shut down these local head shops or bodegas, they will stop poisoning our kids.”

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/heartbroken-mothers-city-emergency-room-doctors-praise-gov-cuomo-crackdown-synthetic-pot-bath-salts-article-1.1130426#ixzz22s8QhMFt