Trucking company tip leads to $19.5 million drug seizure

Police and Alabama ABC enforcement agents seized approximately 4,360 lbs. of raw substances used in making the synthetic marijuana drug known as “spice” valued at $19.5 million thanks to a tip from a Loxley, AL, trucking company, according to a Baldwin Country Now news report

Police and Alabama ABC enforcement agents seized approximately 4,360 lbs. of raw substances used in making the synthetic marijuana drug known as “spice” valued at $19.5 million thanks to a tip from a Loxley, AL, trucking company, according to a Baldwin Country Now news report.

Included in the seizure were approximately 200 boxes of materials such as packaging, labels and sealer, among others, needed to dispense the drug.

The trucking company, which was not identified by authorities, contacted Loxley police after a driver found suspicious boxes in his truck while delivering a shipment. The shipment came from Florida and was returning to Florida when police were called. No arrests have been made in the case.

“We know the shipment came from Florida, was being offloaded at a local trucking hub and reloaded for transport back to Florida, but we don’t know at this time exactly where the shipment came from or where it was going,” said Capt. Hal Taylor of the Alabama ABC Board enforcement division.

“This action demonstrates our commitment to keeping our state safe from these and other new and emerging drugs that have decimated families, ruined lives and caused havoc in communities across the state,” said Taylor in a press release. “These chemicals pose a direct and significant threat, regardless of how they are marketed; we will aggressively pursue those who attempt to manufacture and sell this product.”

“Over the past several months, there has been a growing use of, and interest in, synthetic stimulants, marketed under the name as ‘spice’ labeled, marketed and distributed as incense, potpourri and a variety of other things,” Taylor said. Spice mimics the effects of cocaine, LSD, MDMA, and/or methamphetamine.

“Users have reported impaired perception, reduced motor control, disorientation, extreme paranoia, and violent episodes,” Taylor said. “The long-term physical and psychological effects of use are unknown, but potentially severe.” Spice has become increasingly popular, particularly among teens and young adults, and products containing the substance are sold at a variety of retail outlets and over the Internet.

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