Drugs amnesty will get legal highs off streets
SELLING legal highs is now a criminal offence following a shocking rise in incidents involving psychoactive substances across the county.
Police are calling on stores and suppliers in Macclesfield to surrender their stock as part of an amnesty.
Recent figures reveal that the number of incidents linked to legal highs rocketed by almost 200 per cent in just three years.
Since Thursday, May 26, it is illegal to sell or supply any psychoactive substance.
People in the town had until midnight on Wednesday, June 1, to dispose of these items by without fear of prosecution. Detective chief inspector Paul Beauchamp said: “In Cheshire we are dealing with more incidents each year that involve the use of psychoactive substances.
“Last year nearly 20 per cent of all incidents relating to psychoactive substances involved young people aged 16 years old or younger.
“We have taken the rise in these substances and the harm they are causing seriously and have already used existing anti-social behaviour leg- islation to take action against premises selling them.”
In 2015 the devastated family of Elvis Snelson, 29, from Handforth, issued a legal high warning after he died after taking a legal high called acetylfentanyl, found to be FIVE times more powerful than heroin.
Det ch Insp Beauchamp added: “This isn’t about criminalising those who use these substances, but aimed at the producers, distributors and dealers.
“Just because they’re known as legal highs doesn’t mean to say they are safe, they are lethal.
“They can kill and people are dicing with their life each time they take one.”
Psychoactive substances are often referred to as legal highs and used as an umbrella term for products that are intended to mimic the effects of controlled drugs.
The new legislation will change the way forces tackle psychoactive substances and give police the power to shut down shops that are trading in legal highs as well as those who import the products.
Cheshire Police & Crime Commissioner David Keane said “Much has done much to remove this scourge from the streets.
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