Forensic Network

Legally High?
With
Scott Jardine D and G Police
Katy MacLeod- Training and Outreach
Coordinator- Crew
www.crew2000.org.uk
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What are legal highs?
Legal Highs are substances made
from assorted herbs, herbal
extracts and ‘research chemicals’,
which emulate the effects of some
illegal drugs such as Cannabis, LSD,
Cocaine, or others.
These substances are not currently
controlled by the Misuse of Drugs
or Medicine Acts.”
Arthur & Grunert (2005)
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Terminology
Legal highs
New Psychoactive substances
Novel Psychoactive Substances
Research chemicals
Designer drugs
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Head shops
47 known head shops in Scotland
www.crew2000.org.uk
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www.crew2000.org.uk
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ONLINE SALES OF NPS (Legal Highs)
Jan 2010 : 170 Online Shops
Jan 2011: 314 Online Shops
Jan 2012: 639 Online Shops
March 2013 : ???
Source: EMCDDA, 2013
www.crew2000.org.uk
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“Eric” the chemist
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Current legislation
UK
Misuse of drugs
Medicines act
Temporary class drug orders
Consumer protection legislation
Ireland- New Psychoactive substances bill
NZ-Psychoactive Substances bill
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Enforcement
No Change to Police action
1/5 contain control drugs*
Purity
Adulterants
Festivals
Hospital admissions
* Home Office, 2012
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Novel Psychoactive substances
www.crew2000.org.uk
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NPS- how much a problem in
Scotland?
We don’t know!!
What we do know..
•Crime survey
•Salsus
•Global Drug Survey
People often don’t present at drug services
People don’t report/aren’t asked
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Drugs Crew’s clients present with
Shop
Counselling
(harm reduction advice
sessions)
Festival Crisis
Intervention
Outreach survey
(drug used most often)
Cannabis 34%
Cannabis 57%
Alcohol 75%
Cannabis 42%
General NPS 23%
Cocaine 31%
Ecstasy/MDMA
33%
Alcohol 24%
Alcohol 15%
Alcohol 13%
Unknown 10%
MDMA/Ecstasy
14%
MDMA 8%
GHB/GBL 11%
Cannabis 8%
Cocaine 9%
Cocaine 6%
General NPS 10%
Cocaine 6%
Mephedrone 4%
Steroids 3%
Mephedrone 10%
LSD/Mushrooms
6%
Ketamine 2%
Ketamine 2%
Speed 10%
Legal Highs 5%
Valium 1%
Mephedrone 2%
MDMA 6%
Benzos 3%
Speed 1%
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Club Drug Clinic
Amphetamine and
cocaine replacements
Ecstasy replacements
Opiate and benzo
replacements
LSD and
psychedelic
replacements
Cannabis
replacements
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www.crew2000.org.uk
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4/8/2015
17
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The return of MDMA!
Source: Images courtesy of SCDEA
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Ecstasy
Still can find piperazines in
Ecstasy tablets-include BZP,
mcPP, TMFPP
PMA and PMMA has been
found in some ecstasy
tablets
More recently AMT/5-IT in
tablets
Source: Images courtesy of SCDEA
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Why NPS?
Able to buy online
Other drugs unavailable
Value for money
Quality of other drugs poor
Better quality then illegal drugs
Legal status
Prefer effect
Think they are safer
No access to illegal drugs
Dog detection less
Urine screen detection less
GDS, 2012
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Synthetic versions often
not preferred by users
Other drivers for use:
Legality
Drug tests
Ease of purchase
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Intended effects
Euphoria
Escapism
Empathy/co
nnection
with others
Connection
with music
Dissocociation/alt
ered perceptions
Relaxation
Elevated mood
Feelings of
stimulation and
energy
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Palpitations
Chest pain
Breathing
problems
Headaches
Nausea
Renal issues
Tachycardia
Peripheral
Vasoconstriction
Side effects
Cravings
Agitation
Irritability
Restlessness
Insomnia
Hallucinations
Depression
Anxiety
Paranoia
Crisis mental
state
www.crew2000.org.uk
Ivory Wave poisoned
patients
NPIS 2012
Presentation of toxicity symptoms
NPIS 2012
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The drug is only one part…
Set
Adapted from
Norman Zinberg
Effects
on the user
(experiences & long term)
Setting
Drug
www.crew2000.org.uk
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I’m not feeling anything…
Yeah, me neither.
Where’d you get this
stuff Steve?
A friend of a friend sold it to
me, but it hasn’t hit me yet,
How ‘bout you Mike?
OMG THAT TREE IS EATING THE SKY!!
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High risk groups?
Users using to excessive levels
Naive users (young/new to NPS)
Users with underlying health issues
Poly drug users
Injectors
Freestock image:
http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1334532
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Other key issues
Active ingredients unknown
Dose
Duration of using episode
Plain stupidity!
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Some user perspectives..
“It was like being inside a purple washing machine for 10
hours on high spin” unknown legal high user
“Synthetic varieties are surprisingly potent… it’s quite a chemical
stone. I much prefer cannabis but I like the fact it doesn’t stink the
place out like good grass does.” synthetic cannabinoid user
“I thought it was going to be like coke, I didn’t realise it was
going to be trippy. I was looking for a high and I got a bloody high
all right..” AMT user
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Internet user forums
Erowid
Bluelight
Pill reports
Drugs Forum
Partyvibes
Hundreds More…
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Harm reduction
Advice around administration route
Test dosing and dosage information
Avoid poly drug use including alcohol
Considering set and setting
Having a “sitter”
Thinking about safe sex
Getting home safely
Going to sleep on their side
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Treatment
Drug counselling
Residential treatment
Fellowships and self help
Alternative therapies
Sleep management
Tapering strategies
Prescribing?
www.crew2000.org.uk
Dumfries and Galloway
NPS Working Group set up
in May 2012
Partnership Working
Briefing Documents
Education Inputs
Survey Monkey
Basic Awareness for
professionals
App development
Conference
ED / Mental Health
Caffeine Based Drinks
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Crew
Training packages
Information and advice to professionals and
staff
Drug monitoring groups
Crew online “My Crew”
Drugs database/Phone App
Ongoing research in trends
www.crew2000.org.uk
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What can workers do?
Ask about new psychoactive substances
Its ok not to know therefore gain knowledge from
service users
Appropriate signposting
Share local trends with DMG groups , Crew, Police
and others
www.crew2000.org.uk
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What does the future hold ?
Potential dilemma:
Less users and more problems
Or
More users and less problems
(Moro, 2012)
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Questions?
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Contact details
Katy MacLeod 0131 220 3404
KatyM@crew2000.org.uk
Scott Jardine 0845 600 5701
scott.jardine@dg.pnn.police.uk
www.crew2000.org.uk
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Acknowledgements
Thanks to:
The club drug clinic (London)
Dr Adam Winstock The Global Drugs Survey
Dr. John Ramsay TicTac
Mark Adley (The Drugs Wheel)
SCDEA
James Dear-National Poisons information Service
References:
EMCDDAEU DRUG MARKETS REPORT | A STRATEGIC ANALYSIS
ANNUAL REPORT ON THE HOME OFFICE FORENSIC EARLY WARNING
SYSTEM (FEWS)A SYSTEM TO IDENTIFY NEW PSYCHOACTIVE
SUBSTANCESI N THE UK
www.crew2000.org.uk