Dubai Customs stops 126 attempts to smuggle spice drug

Almost 24kg of drug prevented from entering the emirate this year.
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Dubai Customs inspectors foiled 126 attempts to smuggle a total of 23.5 kilograms of the prohibited Synthetic Cannabinoids, known as the "Spice" narcotic, in Dubai Cargo Village, Dubai Airport Free Zone International and Emirates Post within the first eight months of this year, it announced yesterday.

The "Spice" narcotic is considered to be one of the latest types of drugs that are promoted through websites and sold to teenagers and youngsters as a substance that allegedly helps improve the mood. The impact of this drug is far greater than traditional drugs, and causes serious damage to the central nervous system.

Ahmed Abdullah Bin Lahej, senior manager of air shipping operations, said that all quantities of “Spice substance” seized by Dubai Customs within the past eight months arrived as parcels of different sizes and from some foreign and Arab countries where the use of this substance is common among teenagers and youngsters, especially during the festive seasons. Easy online offering of this substance as well as it availability in small bags that resemble tea bags increases the spread of this narcotic in various countries around the world.

He also explained that the quantities seized have been brought to the state and some other quantities arrived in the UAE only to be sent to other countries through transit. Most of the quantities were in the form of dark brown herbs smuggled in different yet professional ways to mislead the Customs inspectors. Bin Lahej also pointed out that the parcels were addressed to young men, and one of them was even addressed to a 9-year-old Arab child.

This narcotic is known among the young as “manufactured hashish”, which often comes in the form of dark herbs, causing serious damage to human health and safety and, in some cases, may lead to death, based on incidents recorded in the United States. This substance may also lead to delirium, hallucination, confusion, laughter, abnormal behaviour, fits of convulsions, and inability to estimate distances.

The substance belongs to the category “Synthetic Cannabinoids” or the “Cannabimimetics”, which includes around 200 items, where some were produced for pharmaceutical researches in the beginning of the 80s in order to discover the relation between the chemical composition of the drugs and receptor activity of the brain. The rest has been prepared in the pharmaceutical factories and universities as a substance for scientific research, and then found their way to the laboratories in China and Europe, where they were promoted as an alternative to cannabis. The use of these alternatives can lead to the damage of the central nervous system, especially the brain, resulting in a decline in the respiratory system, leading to death in the worst cases.
 

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