Candy Rush: Disguising Illegal Drugs

MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — There is a new twist in the battle against illegal drugs.  Potentially dangerous drugs are turning up with a different look, less conspicuous, and in many cases, kid-friendly.  But they aren’t.

In Texas, lollipops shaped like popular Star Wars characters, Batman, or other fun shapes are laced with Methamphetamine.

Law Enforcement officers are currently investigating cases where drugs were disguised as candy or other edible products.  In Indiana, for example, officers seized Sweetart candy that had been laced with heroin, methamphetamine and the prescription drug Xanax.

In Texas, officers arrested a couple and seized packages of lollipops laced with meth, many in the shape of popular Star Wars characters or Batman.

Even on the Gulf Coast, a woman was arrested in March for selling marijuana-laced lollipops on the beach in Okaloosa County, Florida.  And a teen was arrested in Jackson County, Mississippi for what Sheriff Mike Ezell said was the first he’d seen in 37 years of law enforcement, drug-infused cereal.  Packages of zip-lock bags filled with Rice Krispie Treats and Chex Mix infused with THC, the active ingredient in marijuana.

Marijuana-infused cereal treats seized in Jackson County, Mississippi
 And people in law enforcement are seeing much more of it here on the Gulf Coast.  Mobile County District Attorney Ashley Rich says the ‘face’ of drugs is changing.  She says it’s getting harder for parents to educate their children about drugs because of it.

Some things for parents to look out for, candy or treats is plain zip-lock bags or cellophane.  But she says, even that may not be enough.  Rich says anybody can buy packaging material and dress up illegal drug products to look similar to or just like the real thing.  She says it’s a serious conversation parents need to be having around the dinner table when it comes to warning children that these dangerous elements are out there.

Potentially dangerous drugs are turning up in candy.
In the course of reporting this story, we also found there are many prescription and over the counter drugs that children could also mistake for treats.  Here is a link to one website with examples of that.
Also, we became aware of the Snopes article, the conclusion of which was that the idea of people disguising illegal drugs or lacing candy with drugs was ‘mostly false.’  The findings and testing of these items, like the ones seized by law enforcement cited in this story appear to show that it is a real phenomenon.  Snopes concluded marketing illegal drugs to kids is not exactly a reliable profit maker.  However, the danger to kids is the accidental ingestion of the drugs.  Dealers would appear to be disguising their products in an attempt to make distribution easier and avoid the scrutiny of law enforcement.

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