Nationally coordinated raids of head shops looking for synthetic drugs were executed throughout Central New York on Wednesday.
The raids were apparently coordinated by the DEA and executed by state and local law enforcement.
Similar raids have been reported by news outlets in
. The DEA says the national crackdown is called "Operation Log Jam."
The 420 Emporium in Fulton was one of the many head shops in Central New York that was included in the raids.
CNYCentral obtained a copy of court paperwork supporting the search warrants for the 420 Emporium in Syracuse and Fulton. The application describes a network of synthetic drug distributors sending drugs across the country. The paperwork also contains information from confidential sources and undercover police officers. At one point, an undercover officer describes a clerk at the 420 Emporium in Fulton explaining how one synthetic drug could be used as a hallucinogen.
Fulton residents driving by were cheering on the raids while others watched from across the street. Many watching the Fulton raid used the same phrase, "Itâ??s about time."
new state law
in New York was signed earlier this month aiming to crack down on the sale of "bath salts."
In the past few months, Central New York has seen an increased number of incident involving these synthetic drugs.
Over the past two years, the U.S. has seen a surge in the use of synthetic drugs made of legal chemicals that mimic the effects of illegal stimulants.
Locally, the Utica Common Council voted unanimous to ban the sale and
possession of bath salts
and a State Supreme Court Judge in Syracuse issued a temporary injunction against synthetic drugs sold
at the Twisted Headz store
earlier this month. In Madison County,
a "task force"
was formed to deal with the growing problem of bath salts and other synthetic drugs.
President Barack Obama signed a bill into law earlier this month that bans the sale, production and possession of more than two dozen of the most common bath salt drugs. But health professionals say that there are so many different varieties that lawmakers are playing catch up.
(Information from the Associated Press was used in this story.)