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SYNTHETIC MARIJUANA ILLEGAL AFTER MIDNIGHT

The possession of or sale of synthetic marihuana substances will become illegal in the State of Texas tonight at midnight. The Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office will prosecute those offenders arrested for this crime after a laboratory analysis is done.
The state placed five synthetic cannabinoid substances in Schedule I of the Texas Schedules of Controlled Substances, making it illegal to manufacture, distribute, possess and sell the substances. Penalties for the manufacture, sale, or possession with intent to deliver K2 are Class A misdemeanors. Possession of the banned substances is a Class B misdemeanor.
K2 or Spice, which are marketed as herbal incense, contain substances that produce psychoactive effects similar to those from smoking marijuana. These marijuana-like substances are readily available through smoke shops, gas stations, and the Internet.
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration used its emergency scheduling authority to temporarily ban synthetic marijuana or similar “fake pot” products that mimic the effects of marijuana. The DEA action March 2 made it illegal to manufacture, sell or possess these products for at least one year.
Schedule I, the most restrictive category on the Texas Schedules of Controlled Substances, is reserved for unsafe, highly abused substances with no accepted medical use. Five chemicals, JWH -018, JWH-073, JWH-200, CP-47,497, and cannabicyclohexanol that are found in K2 were placed on the Schedule.
Law enforcement in Montgomery County will be working closely with The Woodlands Regional Crime Lab to investigate and potentially prosecute these offenders. The District Attorney will prosecute all individuals violating this statute. The Woodlands Lab is one of the few labs in the nation that is capable of analyzing these substances. Law enforcement in the county will be warning businesses that they may face criminal prosecution for selling or possessing these substances.
Dr. Sarah Kerrigan states that "this is a growing problem in the United States, and we are ready and willing to assist agencies with testing in Texas." District Attorney, Brett Ligon, states that “this will be a valuable tool to ensure that these dangerous substances are removed from our streets and it will make it more difficult for our youth to obtain these mind altering substances.”

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