THIRTY bags of Mephedrone were seized from a Blackburn house just hours after the party drug became illegal.
Officers swooped on the terraced home in Livesey Branch Road yesterday morning, in what is thought to be the first raid of its kind in the country.
The drug, known locally as 'bubble', officially became illegal at midnight after nationwide concern over the use of the product, which could be bought over the internet as a plant fertiliser.
Mephedrone has been linked to several deaths across the country after it began to be used as a substitute for illegal drugs like ecstasy and cocaine.
PC Mark Perry, who carried out the seizure, said the haul was a great victory in the war on drugs and said it showed the commitment of local officers to crackdown on substance misuse.
Police visited the house, near the junction with Heys Lane, at around 11.30am yesterday.
Officers said 30 ‘snap bags’ of mephedrone were found in a box in the lounge of the property.
They are thought to be worth around £15 each and contained three or four hits of the drug.
Fifteen large cannabis plants were also discovered, four were under the stairs and 11 in a back bedroom.
It is understood that the resident of the property only moved in on Thursday.
Police were tipped off about suspicious behaviour at the house and that black plastic sheeting had been put in place at the back window of the property.
PC Perry said: “This seizure highlights the fact that as of now mephedrone is illegal and we will be taking its use, possession and supply very seriously.
“We are also proud that the tip-off came in the morning and the police acted immediately and taken these drugs off the street.”
The government classified the substance as a class B drug after it was said to have a similar affect to cocaine when snorted.
It is being blamed for anxiety, paranoia and a risk of seizures.
Police said it was the first seizure of its kind in Lancashire and was also believed to be the first in the country since the law changed.
Chief Superintendent Bob Eastwood said: “Clearly the drug is considered dangerous enough to be classed as Class B.
“We will take the same approach as with other drugs and officers will deal very seriously with anyone in possession or supplying it.
“Now it is illegal it is a different ball game and people should they are committing a criminal offence by possessing it.”
In East Lancashire, officers had said the use of the substance as a party drug had been causing growing concern.
While it was legal, pub and club owners reported a rise in the number of people attempting to take it on their premises.
Police and drug charities then issued a plea for people to not take it under any circumstances.
Chris Lee, from the Lancashire Drug and Alcohol Action Team, said advice on the drug was now being included in talks at schools across Lancashire.
A 21-year-old local man was arrested at the scene on suspicion of possession of a class B drug.
April 17, 2010
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Mephedrone seized from Blackburn house