Posts tagged: Spice
Five people from Boise and Meridian have been indicted on federal charges for smuggling, money laundering, and selling “spice,” a synthetic marijuana product, and authorities say they were operating across the nation. “This investigation has taken out a major player in the synthetic drug industry who was operating coast to coast,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge Matthew G. Barnes. “Criminal drug organizations prey on our youth to line their pockets with millions of dollars in drug proceeds. This emerging industry poses a significant threat to our communities and regardless of how they are marketed, we will continue with our law enforcement partners to aggressively pursue them.”
Click below for a full news release from U.S. Attorney for Idaho Wendy Olson; the indictment by a federal grand jury in Boise was unsealed yesterday. The indictments are the result of a joint operation by an array of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies. “Although we don't yet know the full toll that these substances that mimic cannabis have taken on users, we do know that emergency room workers, parents and law enforcement officers have terrifying stories of medically dangerous and sometimes deadly reactions,” Olson said. “I commend all of the agencies and prosecutors who spent countless hours bringing the investigation to this point.”
Idaho has seen two major drug raids in the last 24 hours, as federal authorities raided 11 locations in Twin Falls County in a crackdown on selling “spice,” or synthetic marijuana; and Idaho State Police detectives, along with aerial support, raided 12 marijuana grow sites in a Gooding County cornfield, pulling 3,684 marijuana plants that ISP said have an estimated street value of more than $7 million.
The ISP received an anonymous tip last night, prompting the cornfield raid; they're asking anyone with information to call a tip hotline at (800) 524-7277.
The spice raids, which were preceded by five indictments for conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance analogue, were part of a nationwide spice crackdown and targeted businesses including a Twin Falls auto sales lot, a skate shop, a tattoo and body piercing shop and more. The defendants, if convicted, could face up to 20 years in prison. Click below for a full announcement from Idaho U.S. Attorney Wendy Olson; the raid is part of a national push that earlier targeted 13 head shops in the Treasure Valley, in which nine were found to be openly selling spice.
Said Olson, “This week's law enforcement actions should send a strong message that if you're selling spice under any name or packaging you need to stop.”
After a multi-year investigation, federal agents yesterday raided more than a dozen head shops across the Treasure Valley, and arrested the owners and operators on charges including conspiracy to sell and offering to sell drug paraphernalia; nine of the 13 were found to be openly selling “Spice,” or synthetic marijuana, which Idaho lawmakers outlawed last year. U.S. Attorney for Idaho Wendy Olson said, “The United State's Attorney's Office and its federal, state and local law enforcement partners will attack drug trafficking on all fronts.”
Sixteen people have been indicted, and at least 14 of them arrested. Boise Police Chief Michael Masterson said, “This investigation and the execution of these search warrants should send a strong message that if you're selling Spice under any name or packaging, you need to stop.” Matthew Barnes, federal Drug Enforcement Administration special agent in chage, said, “Criminal organizations that masquerade as legitimate storefronts to sell drug paraphernalia to our children will not be tolerated.” You can read the full announcement here from the U.S. Attorney's office about “Operation Headshop - Not for Human Consumption.”
Gov. Butch Otter says on Friday he’ll sign a temporary rule proposed by the state Board of Pharmacy to add the chemicals used in “Spice,” a form of synthetic marijuana, to the state’s controlled substances list. The state Legislature then will consider making that move permanent when it convenes for its regular session in January. Click below to read Otter’s full announcement.