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Police Seize 'Mephadrone' From Head Shop

  1. Finn Mac Cool
    Drug problem

    POLICE have seized a quantity of what's thought to be 'mephadrone' - a legal high - openly on sale at business premises in the town.
    It's understood the material was taken from premises at William Street for further forensic tests.

    Mephadrone is known in street slang as Plant Food, Mugabe, Meow, Meph, Magic or Bath Salts.

    It is one of the so-called 'legal highs' and is a psychochoactive drug and research chemical of the phenethylamine, amphetamine and cathinine chemical classes.

    The drug has been linked to a death in Sweden and, the 'MAIL' understands, may have been a factor in a recent death of a young man in the town.

    It is most commonly sold as a white powder or crystal form or in capsules containing the powder. It can also be found in pill form.

    Drug users, some as young as 14, have turned to what's known as 'legal highs' in their quest for ever more extreme 'entertainment'.

    One source told the 'MAIL': "It's becoming a big thing with young people and those old enough to know better.

    "Kids as young as 14 are using it, but a wide age range are taking it. They can get it cheap and they can order it over the internet."

    The drug has often been compared to Ecstasy for its effects and predominantly stimulant qualities.

    Its current street price, according to our sources, is around £25 a gramme - compared to £50 for a gramme of cocaine.

    Reported side effects include the narrowing of blood vessels. Reports of addiction and problematic use have also emerged.

    For legislators the big problem is finding a way of making it illegal as changes to the ingredients could render the law powerless.

    However, our sources also pointed out harder, illegal drugs are also making a comeback - particularly cocaine.

    In terms of Ecstacy the current street price is £2.50 a tablet but users are putting their lives very much in the hands of the dealers with the drug cut with all sorts of other chemicals - including rat poison.

    Local police commander Chief Inspector Jason Murphy said: "We have been aware of this product circulating around Craigavon for several weeks.

    "It has all the characteristics of controlled drugs and until forensic tests prove otherwise, we will continue to conduct searches for it.

    "The public have absolutely no idea what is contained within this concoction and I would urge people not to use it. All drugs are dangerous, especially substances like this which are untested.

    "If it was safe, all the shops would be openly selling it. Anyone with information relating to the supply of this substance should contact Lurgan Police Station on XXX or Crimestoppers on XXX

    Published Date: 12 November 2009
    By Staff reporter



  1. readeadamie
    Will it ever be returned? And how long will the tests take? A half gram of mephedrone was confiscated from SWIM for forensic analysis. SWIM never expects to hear anything about it again. SWIM feels he was robbed by the cops.
  2. chillinwill
    This is a very interesting article Sib. Thanks for sharing.

    Please note that the way we post news has changed, because of our main news page. You can find the full instructions here.

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  3. Space Numpty
    Whilst SWIM has his own opinion on the legality of more common street drugs, he feels that the ease of availability and the feeling that "if its not illegal its safe" that is appearing to prevail amoungst many users, he personally welcomes this action.

    Noone wants "big brother" to come along and spoil their fun BUT something too many people seem to take little heed of is Mephedrone along with all other RC's IS NOT TESTED OR RESEARCHED on its long term effects. As SWIM himself has done, SWIMmers are taking their life into their own hands using a chemical that they have no knowledge of the physical or mental legacy it may bring with it. SWIM, now he has a much greater knowledge of RC's mainly due to DF and his own research, would not go near them again. Not even "smoking blends" which SWIM has smoked way back when people believed they where simply a mixture of herbs. It really shocked SWIM when he found out he had ingested synthetic chemicals in something that is sold as purely herbal, even if he must admit he couldnt quite believe the strength of it if it was truely "all natural"

    YES, there are people, many of them on DF that seem to use Mephedrone, for example, in small sensible volumes and seem to be suffering no ill effect, but as SWIM has read before somewhere on DF in ten years time we could be seeing Mephedrone users ending up in wheelchairs. The reality is we simply do not know.

    It is with this in mind that SWIM, as he said, is in favour of the control of RC's, much more so than common street "drugs". At least we know the dangers with things like Cocaine, Heroin, LSD, Cannabis etc SWIM believes that by outlawing more traditional substances society has brought a much greater evil upon us and for SWIM the explosion of RC's onto the streets is the strongest argument for the legalisation of traditionally outlawed substances he has ever seen. SWIM's secret pet armadillo was very naughty in the past and was known to sell the odd product but at least he knew what the fuck he was passing on to the toys in the attic. These headshops and websites are selling an unknown quantity that SWIMmers are putting into their body AND fighting for their right to do so. Not much better than free marketing is there?

    SWIM will probably catch some boo's for this post but fuck it. Whilst some of us are sensible (SWIM doesnt include himself in that category) SWIMmers need to understand that many are not. Not only that but as SWIM has said it is impossible to be sensible with an RC. It is a contradiction in terms. More alarmingly SWIM is hearing more and more stories of kids getting hold of these substances directly due to its ease of purchase and to some extent its legality, so whilst one may fight to defend the right for them to make an informed decision as an adult, do they then support the right for a 15 year old to take the stuff, because you cant have one without the other...
  4. Doublefields
    You know it's going to be a great piece when they can't even spell the name of the drug.

    Wow i havn't heard the rat poison story for a while, i thought they'd given up on that. Really, what would be the point in dealers putting something that would kill their customers in their product. Not a great business plan.
  5. Coconut
    Dear Editor,

    I would like to make a formal complaint regarding the article "Drug problem", published on the 12th of November: http://www.lurganmail.co.uk/news/Drug-problem.5814209.jp

    I feel that this article is an example of poor research and sloppy journalism, and anyone who knows anything about psychoactive drugs would agree.

    In the very first sentence, there is a laughable error which destroys all credibility this article may have had: the spelling of the compound "mephedrone", which is spelt "mephadrone" twice in the piece. Had this "Staff writer" spent two minutes researching mephedrone, they would have discovered its correct spelling, which is derived from its IUPAC name.

    The second problem I noticed occurs in the fourth paragraph, or rather, is the fourth paragraph. Everything after the first occurence of the word "and" seems to be directly copied from the Wikipedia article on mephedrone. For comparison:

    Lurgan Mail: It is one of the so-called 'legal highs' and is a psychoactive drug and research chemical of the phenethylamine, amphetamine and cathinine chemical classes.

    Wikipedia: Mephedrone, also known as 4-methylmethcathinone (4-MMC) is a psychoactive drug and research chemical of the phenethylamine, amphetamine, and cathinone chemical classes.

    Strangely enough, this would imply that the author did bother to research this substance before writing about it (or just copy some text from Wikipedia in the laziest fashion), but how does that explain the egregious naming errors of mephedrone ("mephadrone") and cathinone ("cathinine")?

    Anyway, let us move on, shall we?

    Next, we have the implication that mephedrone is lethal. Let me remind you that the widely publicised deaths of people who ingested mephedrone were a result of a combination of drugs, and I would be very surprised if that highly toxic, industrial chemical "ethanol" was not involved.

    So now we have the claim that young people are turning to "legal highs" (nice of you to pull those heartstrings) for "extreme entertainment". No, it's not extreme entertainment, it's the fact that humans have always, and will always, seek out ways to alter their consciousness. Teenagers can get their hands on any drug, and the most dangerous one which they consume on a frequent basis is that damned ethanol.

    "Kids as young as 14 are using it, but a wide age range are taking it. They can get it cheap and they can order it over the internet."

    You know, just for once, I would like to see an honest, balanced article on research chemicals; one which doesn't play the predictable "protect our children" card. Kids can order anything over the internet. More often than not, this requires a credit card. Any guesses where they get those from?

    "Its current street price, according to our sources, is around £25 a gramme - compared to £50 for a gramme of cocaine."

    Nobody buys mephedrone on the street. This is laughable. Do you know why nobody buys it on the street? For the same reason nobody buys alcohol on the street: you can buy it in a safe location and from reputable vendors.

    "In terms of Ecstacy the current street price is £2.50 a tablet but users are putting their lives very much in the hands of the dealers with the drug cut with all sorts of other chemicals - including rat poison."

    Seriously? What kind of dealer wants his customers dead? Do you have any evidence that they are actively cutting their drugs with rat poison? This is also a compelling argument for legalisation and regulation. Under prohibition, drugs are in the hands of criminals. Under legalisation, drugs are in the hands of the people as a whole, so purity and safety can be guaranteed.

    "It has all the characteristics of controlled drugs and until forensic tests prove otherwise, we will continue to conduct searches for it."

    What are the characteristics of controlled drugs? They have incredibly various effects, and most of them are nothing alike. Does it not worry you that the people who enforce drug laws don't have a clue about what they're enforcing? Does it not worry you that you, as the editor of a media source, can let this slip through into publication without asking some hard questions?

    Mephedrone is legal in the United Kingdom.

    "The public have absolutely no idea what is contained within this concoction and I would urge people not to use it. All drugs are dangerous, especially substances like this which are untested."

    All drugs are dangerous, including alcohol, nicotine, paracetamol, ibuprofen and caffeine, which (believe it or not) are drugs too. It is the dosage, not the substance, which determines toxicity. If the media really believes in keeping people safe from drugs, you should lobby the state to test these substances and release information on how to use them safely.

    How come I never see papers publishing horrific deaths as a result of alcohol overdoses? I suppose you can't whip up an emotional frenzy when your target audience takes doses of alcohol regularly.

    I do hope you will consider what I have said carefully. If you feel I am mistaken, I would be honoured for you to publish a refutation of the points I have made. Alternatively, I would also accept such a challenge in the form of a private e-mail.

    Thank you for your time.
  6. Space Numpty
    SWIM couldnt agree more SWICoconut, the media are only interested in pedalling bullshit designed to keeps us all scared and controlled.

    But, why are you complaining to DF? noone here wrote the article it ws merely used by a fellow SWIMer to make people aware as to what is being reported.

    That said SWIM agrees that the spreading of these sort of "horror stories" sucks and is counter productive. Before SWIM smoked weed he had had drummed into him "all drugs are evil". When he had a toke and enjoyed it and didnt go mad it destroyed all credability that society had on the "drug issue". In some way this led SWIM to try harder things.

    The "rat poison" stories always make SWIM smile. Are people aware that one very common rat poison is called Warfarin and is also used medically for blood clots and high blood pressure. Therefore it would be accurate to say that some perscribed medication contains rat poison. Silly media.t

    P.S One thing SWICoconut, believe it or not Mephedrone is being sold in the street AND is being used to cut things like Cocaine. I dont think its going for as high as £25 as is reported but people are buying batch quantities and selling them on thats for sure.
  7. Finn Mac Cool
    Nice one coconut, what date did you post this to them at? I'll keep an eye on the letters page to see if it gets published, instead of the usual sectarian bile that gets posted every week. From what I've heard, Meph usage has rocketed in town, it would seem the article has had the opposite effect, that's what happens when journalists use wilki.
  8. Coconut
    I understand it was being used to cut or sell as cocaine, but I wasn't really aware of mephedrone being sold as mephedrone, given that it's available openly in head shops and from RC vendors.

    Thanks to everyone who pointed out this error on my part.

    It's a copy of a letter I sent to the paper.

    Yesterday (28th).
  9. akack2
    nice letter,being sold on the street in a big way in the north and in the last few weeks also in the south in Ireland.
  10. Joe-(5-HTP)
    swim reports that mephedrone is indeed being sold on the streets as mephedrone or 'M-cat' (UK major cities) by dealers who buy it in bulk. Swim reports it is very widespread.
  11. Alfa
    Its sold on the streets all over Europe.
  12. Finn Mac Cool
    The shop is selling meph for more than double the cost, nice little earner at that rate.
  13. akack2
    shops pay commercial rent,rates and possibly taxes

    they also pay hourly wages to staff,electricity bills and phone/broadband bills and fork out for plenty of other overheads which regular dealers dont

    so i dont see what your point is
  14. ianzombie
    Very good letter Coconut, well written.
    Swim finds this report very interesting as he was in the shop in question only 2 weeks ago when a member of staff told a customer who was looking for Mephadrone that they no longer sold it due to increasing problems that users were having.
    So Swim presumes that they either decided to restock it or the police who raided the shop actually picked up a different product in the raid.

    Swim knows that other Head-Shops in the city have also stopped selling Mephadrone containing products because of the negative publicity it has been attracting of late.

    Swim will be interested to hear of any follow up reports, especially anything regarding the results of any tests carried out on the substances taken from the stores.
  15. anon14smate
    Hey drugs forum

    first of all id like to say that being from lurgan, and a close friend of the young man mentioned in the article who died recently after taking mephedrone, i was angered by the poor quality of the article written on "mephadrone" (sic), as somebody above said, it has had the opposite affect, such lazy uninformed journalism is never good. but they dont call it the lurgan liar for nothing. Coconuts letter to the editor raises some very good points and i am eagerly awaiting wednesday to see if it was published, though seeing as it lacked the usual sectarian overtones i wont hold my breath. However, i should point out a few things to coconut:

    I know someone mentioned this already but mephedrone is being sold in the streets, usuall XXXX gram but XXXXX in the head shop, and the majority of the plant food sold is sold on the street probably due to the fact that most of it is sold at stupid oclock on friday and saturday nites. The head shop is a soft target to hit for police because although the head shop in question accounts for very little of the meph sold in the area, it makes it look like the police are doing something to tackle the problem which is increasing in the town. This is typical of police in the area who are well known for policing statistics, and often watch drug deals take place then arrest the buyer whilst leaving the dealers to continue selling drugs.

    My friend who died hadnt taken a mixture of (illicit or RC) drugs, the only drug he had taken in 3 months prior to his death was meph. The nite he died he had been drinking some alcohol, but you seem surprised at the implication that mephedrone is lethal- of course mephedrone is lethal, if you take enough of it, lots of things are lethal if you take enough of it, just last week some woman on an american gameshow died after a water driking challenge. Responsible use, of course, reduces the lethality (is that a word) of it.

    anyway il keep an eye out for your letter coconut, but if they send you a reply post it cuz they mite not print it in the paper.

    ---------mod edited, price discussions are against the rules
  16. kailey_elise
    Agreed. If they can do it & make a profit, good for them.

  17. HabitualCriminal
    I am aware of a shop close by swim that trading standards took a load of mephedrone as it was labled as a bath salt but clearly was prepared for ingestion (gel caps). Could this be how police are getting away with raiding shops? because at the end of the day just because something is not illegal, doent mean it can be sold for human consumption.
  18. chinpokomaster
    I've seen lots of bath salt type products sold in gelatin balls and the like. I suppose gelcaps are something we associate with human consumption but there shouldn't be a difference, principally. It's something they could argue in court.
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