Queensland convenience stores still selling harmful synthetic drugs will be prosecuted, the state’s police commissioner says.
Queensland’s police commissioner has vowed to crack down on convenience stores that unwittingly sell harmful synthetic drugs.
The state last year became the first and only jurisdiction in Australia to ban any product that mimicked the pharmaceutical effects of an illicit drug, not just certain active ingredients.
But Commissioner Ian Stewart says convenience stores and adult shops are still selling the illegal highs that have been known to cause hallucinations and even death.
“There are still some people in Queensland who might run a service station, for instance, who aren’t quite up with the law,” he told reporters at the launch of a synthetic drugs awareness campaign in Brisbane.
“I can tell you now that they will be prosecuted whether they’re bringing them in or selling them almost from a naivety of not understanding the law because they’ve seen them on sale in another state.
“I’m still concerned at the education of small business owners is not as complete as perhaps what we’d like it.”
Dr Christian Rowan, an addiction medicine specialist who is also the Queensland president of the Australian Medical Association, said synthetic drugs can cause stroke, heart and kidney failure along with mental health and cognitive problems.
“We’d say they’re all dangerous,” he said.
“You can’t simply identify one as more dangerous than another.”
Synthetic drugs are sold interstate as bath salts and kronic, an artificial marijuana.
Last year, Sydney teenager Henry Kwan jumped to his death from a balcony after taking synthetic LSD bought online.
In May, Liam O’Shea-Leamy, 17, drowned in a Townsville pool after having a psychotic reaction to a synthetic drug.