Designer Drug Issues in the State of New Jersey Assistant Prosecutor W. Brian Stack (908) 575-3320; [email protected] Revised from original PowerPoint by: DEBORAH COLE FORENSIC SCIENTIST III OFFICE OF FORENSIC SCIENCE NEW JERSEY STATE POLICE [email protected] (609)584-5054 ext. 5741 Designer Drugs • “Designer drugs” are synthetic derivatives of federally controlled substances, created by slightly altering the molecular structure of existing drugs • Produced illegally in clandestine laboratories for illicit use • Most prevalent: Cathinones and Synthetic Cannabinoids Worldwide Epidemic Manufactured in China, India and Asia Ordered online from Asian distributors Routed through Europe and shipped to the US in inconspicuous packaging - almost impossible to track Sold in convenience stores, gas stations, head & skateboard shops Synthetic Cannabinoids (Spice / K2 / Synthetic Marijuana) • Synthetic marijuana is a designer drug in which herbs, incense or other leafy materials are sprayed with lab-synthesized liquid chemicals to mimic the effect of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. How to make Synthetic Cannabinoids Crystalline/pure Source: Asia Mix with acetone Let dry and package Spray vegetation Synthetic Marijuana base can be any smokable herbal mixtures. Potpourri? $25.00 for 3 grams or $3,779.93 per pound. $1.40 for 1 Lb = 453.592 grams History Synthetic cannabinoids were first designed after the structure of the primary psychoactive compound in marijuana, 9-tetrahydrocannabinol (9-THC), was figured out in the 1960s. Synthetic cannabinoids have been used as a tool to study endocannabinoid biochemistry and also to design cannabinoid derivatives for medicinal use, for example in appetite stimulants and pain medications. In the late 1990s, The John W. Huffman research group at Clemson University began to synthesize over 450 cannabinoids. JWH-018 was one such synthetic cannabinoid that his group created for research purposes but in 2004 it first appeared in Europe in recreational smoke blends under the marketed name “Spice” or “K2.” First became available in the U.S. in 2008. It was frequently marketed as incense in colorful three ounce pouches and labeled “not for human consumption”. Spice or K2 became increasingly popular with high school students and young adults because it was legally obtainable from convenience stores, smoke shops, and online. • Similar effects to natural marijuana -- elevated mood, relaxation, and altered perception. • Effects often stronger than natural marijuana due to the synthesized chemicals. Users report psychotic effects like extreme anxiety, paranoia, and hallucinations. • Some of the synthesized compounds in synthetic marijuana bind much more strongly to THC receptors than regular marijuana, which can lead to a more powerful, unpredictable or dangerous effect - some are 100x more potent than the THC in natural marijuana. • In addition, the chemical composition is not regulated and may be laced with other toxic chemicals. Growing Popularity and Media Attention In 2010, the DEA reported that 30–35% of specimens submitted by juvenile probation departments tested positive for synthetic cannabinoids. 2011 Use of synthetic marijuana use was second only to use of natural marijuana in high school seniors. 36% of U.S. high school seniors reported past year use of natural marijuana, while over 11% reported use of synthetic marijuana 4.5% of urine specimens collected from 5,956 U.S. athletes tested positive for synthetic cannabinoids, the highest of all drug classes detected. Why so popular? • Easy to obtain at most convenience stores; • Trade shows (vendors sell products at annual counter-culture convention in Atlantic City); • Most drug tests do not test for these substances – US Military, CDL licenses, Employers, Drug Courts; • Addictive – Somerset County CI’s report the length of high is only 30 minutes, and some users resort to prostitution to fund their habit. Spice Timeline Hundreds of new brands emerge: Comatose Candy, NJ and NY Ban Kush, Happy Hour, entire classes Chronic, Down to Earth, of synthetics Booda Bud, Fragrant including potpourri, Climaxxx, Cloud analogs. 9, Wicked X THC isolated from Cannibis Synthesis of HU-210 The brand “spice” was coined in Europe USA Federal ban on 5 synthetic compounds Spice/K2 hits USA CP-47,497 by Pfizer 1964 1970 1988 Synthesis of JWH-018 1995 K2 introduced in Europe 2004 2006 2009 2010 2011 2012 Austria and switzerland ban spice. States enact emergency Legisl. Poison Control Data American Assn. of Poison Control Centers Synthetic Marijuana Data: Year 2011 2012 2013 2014 (through Aug. 31) Number of Cases 6,968 5,230 2,666 2,154 Horror Stories • Synthetic marijuana killed nine people in 2010 in the U.S. • An 18 year old, David Rozga, of Indianola, Iowa smoked Spice and “felt like he was in hell” and shot himself with a shotgun • A Hawaiian man threw his girlfriend off an 11th floor balcony while high on Spice • 2011 Chase’s Law (banning synthetic marijuana) was passed in Georgia. • Named after 16 y/o Georgia teen Chase Burnett. • Chase was found dead in March in a hot tub at his Fayette County home, a packet of synthetic marijuana was found nearby. • Max Dobner, (Illinois) died June 14, 2011 after he bought a $12 packet of “ iAroma” at the local mall. Within 15 minutes of smoking it, he phoned his older brother to say he was having a panic attack and was freaking out. • Dobner, a college student, got into his 1999 Chrysler and drove 100 mph on neighborhood roads until he crashed into and destroyed a suburban home, the car lodged inside a baby’s empty bedroom. • http://2themax.org/ “Bath Salts” - Synthetic Cathinones • Synthetic cathinones are central nervous system stimulants. • They are chemically similar to cathinone, a Schedule I controlled substance that occurs naturally in the khat plant (Catha edulis) a native African plant. Not really “Bath Salts” Psychoactive drug that produces distinctive emotional and social effects, similar to those of Ecstasy (MDMA) and Hallucinogens, but also act as central nervous system stimulants (like cocaine or amphetamines). Dangerous? • • • • • Anxious and jittery behavior Decreased need for sleep Lack of appetite Severe paranoia Erratic behavior with potential for hallucinations • Violence and self-mutilation Artist Bryan Lewis Saunders’ “Drugs” Self Portrait Project So what does doing bath salts feel like? Saunders said he's only tried any given drug -- except for weed -- one time. But he said bath salts gave him the worst trip of all. "It made me angry, ornery, just gave me a real vicious angst," he said. "It's like a dark cloud of doom settling on your shoulders. Your brain gets really clogged.” "You just want it to end -- I'd never ever do it again," he added. Generation 1 MDPV Mephedrone In decline due to federal ban Poison Control Data American Ass’n of Poison Control Centers Bath Salts Data Year 2011 2012 2013 2014 (through Aug. 31) Number of Cases 6,137 2,691 996 421 Horror Stories DICKIE SANDERS, PICTURED HERE ON LEFT WITH HIS FATHER RICK AND SISTER JAYMI, TOOK HIS OWN LIFE DAYS AFTER INGESTING BATH SALTS. ACCORDING TO HIS MOTHER, SANDERS FIRST SLICED HIS OWN THROAT AND SAID, "I CAN'T HANDLE WHAT THIS DRUG HAS DONE TO ME. I'M NEVER GOING TO TOUCH ANYTHING AGAIN." HOURS LATER HE SHOT HIMSELF. "HE TOOK HIS LIFE BECAUSE HE WAS SCARED OUT OF HIS MIND," HIS FATHER TOLD ABC NEWS. Horror Stories Investigators determine that Army Sgt. David Stewart was under the influence of bath salts when he killed himself, his wife Kristy and their five-year-old son (who was found with a plastic bag over his head) in Spanaway, Washington. Granules of bath salts were found in his car and his home, and a 500-milligram jar of salts was found in his pocket, according to the coroner. Horror Stories Mark Thompson of Alum Creek, West Virginia was arrested after allegedly killing his neighbor's goat while under the influence of bath salts. According to the criminal complaint, Thompson was found semi-dressed in women's clothing in his bedroom with blood everywhere. The goat was dead on the floor next to a pornographic photo. Thompson told police he'd been taking bath salts for three days. New Jersey Legal History “Bath Salts” On 4/27/11, by Order of the Acting Director of the NJ Division of Consumer Affairs, six types of “bath salts” were added to the New Jersey list of Controlled Dangerous Substances as Schedule I CDS: 3,4 – Methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV) 4 – Methylmethcathinone (Mephedrone, 4-MMC) 3,4 – Methylenedioxymethcathinone (Methylone, MDMC) 4 – Fluoromethcathinone (Flephedrone, 4-FMC) 3 – Fluoromethcathinone (3-FMC) 4 – Methoxymethcathinone (Methedrone, bk-PMMA, PMMC) K2 / Spice / Synthetic Cannabinoids / Herbal Incense On 4/1/11, five synthetic cannabinoids became Schedule I Controlled Dangerous Substances in New Jersey: 1-pentyl-3-(1-naphthoyl)indole (JWH-018) 1-butyl-3-(1-naphthoyl)indole (JWH-073) 1-[2-(4-morpholinyl)etyl]-3-(1-naphtyoyl)indole (JWH-200) 5-(1,1-dimethylheptyl)-2-[(1R,3S)-3-hydroxycyclohexyl]-phenol (CP-47,497) 5-(1,1-dimethyloctyl))-2-[(1R,3S)-3-hydroxycyclohexyl]-phenol (cannabicyclohexanol; CP-47,497 C8) The DEA Administrator issued an Order scheduling these substances dated 3/1/11; under NJ law, the substances automatically become scheduled in NJ 30 days later. Current Law: Synthetic Cannabinoids (as of 3/12/13) • Distribution / PWI – 2C:35-5.3b – 1 oz. or more = 2nd degree – Less than 1 oz. = 3rd degree • Possession – 2C:35-5.3c – 1 oz. or more = 3rd degree – Less than 1 oz. = 4th degree • “Synthetic Cannabinoid” – includes 11 named classes, as well as “any other synthetic chemical compound that is a cannabinoid receptor agonist and mimics the pharmacological effect of naturally occurring cannabinoids that is not listed in Schedules II through V or is not an FDA approved drug.” Current Law: Synthetic Cathinones (as of 8/22/11) • Distribution / PWI – 2C:35-5.3a (six named types) – 1 oz. or more = 2nd degree – Less than 1 oz. = 3rd degree • Possession – 2C:35-10.3a – 1 oz. or more = 3rd degree – Less than 1 oz. = 4th degree • Only applies to six named substances. 24:21-3c – “30 day rollover” • c. If any substance is designated, rescheduled or deleted as a controlled dangerous substance under Federal law and notice thereof is given to the director, the director shall similarly control the substance under P.L.1970, c. 226, as amended and supplemented, after the expiration of 30 days from publication in the Federal Register of a final order designating a substance as a controlled dangerous substance or rescheduling or deleting a substance, unless within that 30-day period, the director objects to inclusion, rescheduling, or deletion. . . . Any substance scheduled federally automatically becomes scheduled in New Jersey 30 days later. Main groups of new psychoactive substances Generation 2 and 3 • Naphyrone • 4'-methyl-a-pyrrolidinopropiophenone (MPPP) • 3',4'-methylenedioxy-a-pyrrolidinopropiophenone (MDPPP) • methylone (or 3,4-methylenedioxymethcathinone • a-pyrrolidinopropiophenone (a-PPP) • 3',4'-methylenedioxy-a-pyrrolidinopropiophenone (MDPPP) • Pentedrone - also known as 2-(methylamino)-1phenylpentan-1-one • Alpha-PVP - a-Pyrrolidinopentiophenone (alphaPyrrolidinovalerophenone Problem: • New substances are being created and sold (legally) faster than law enforcement can identify the substances as a problem and the legislature can act to ban them. Next Problem: Vaping, E-cigarettes and E-liquids • • • • No odor Lab takes months to test substance Substances not yet scheduled Sold in vapor shops Questions?