Thursday, March 08, 2012
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House votes unanimously for Attorney General Madigan's proposal to combat synthetic drugs

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[March 08, 2012]  SPRINGFIELD -- Attorney General Lisa Madigan on Tuesday applauded the Illinois House's unanimous vote to approve an amendment to the Illinois Food, Drug and Cosmetics Act that will help combat the synthetic drug epidemic in the state. The House vote occurred the same day investigators with the attorney general's office joined law enforcement agencies in Mason and Fulton counties to remove almost 2,000 synthetic drug packages worth nearly $33,000 from retail stores in the area.

"The dramatic rise of synthetic drug use in Illinois has created a unique and difficult challenge for law enforcement," Madigan said. "My office is working both with the legislature and local law enforcement agencies to provide tools and resources to stop the spread of these potentially deadly drugs."

House Bill 5233 targets the retail sale of synthetic drugs by defining a "synthetic drug product" as one that contains a controlled substance not regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The bill also addresses the fact that these drugs are sold in packages with misleading labels claiming the products are legal. The bill further makes it illegal under the Illinois Food, Drug and Cosmetics Act to sell these drugs and significantly increases the penalty for selling synthetic drug products or misbranded drugs.

"As a former police officer who understands how illegal drugs can decimate communities, I enthusiastically sponsored this legislation on behalf of Attorney General Madigan," said Rep. Costello, D-Smithton. "This legislation directs our focus to those involved in making and distributing constantly evolving drug concoctions."

[Text from file received from the office of Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan]

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