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Baker Bill to Crack Down on New Illegal Substances

To aid in the fight against the proliferation of newly created designer drugs

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - June 9, 2016

HARRISBURG – Legislation Rep. Matt Baker (R-Tioga/Bradford/Potter) has been working on for several years to aid in the fight against the proliferation of newly created designer drugs has finally been signed into law.

The new law will work by speeding up the process by which new substances used in the manufacturing of designer drugs can be added to the state’s banned list of drugs, thereby enabling law enforcement to arrest and prosecute individuals for use of these new drug cocktails.

“Today’s criminals are smart and savvy and have learned how to use different chemicals to create new drug combinations to try and avoid prosecution,” said Baker. “My legislation combats those efforts by allowing the use of these substances and combination chemicals to be quickly added to a banned list – a process that use to take a fair amount of time to accomplish. Law enforcement will now be able to keep up with the quickly changing illegal drug market and prosecute those who possess these substances with the intent to manufacture illegal drugs.”

The new law permits the secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Health to ban substances temporarily, pending full regulatory review, when there is a threat to public health. Currently, banning a substance under the Controlled Substance, Drug, Device and Cosmetic Act requires an act of the General Assembly, which can often be a time consuming process.

“This is one more step forward in our fight against the illegal drug market,” said Baker. “Drug abuse and misuse has become an epidemic and I have been a leader and avid supporter of new laws to help combat this trending crime. Next to prescription drug abuse, these new designer drugs are a major plague on our society with individuals exposing themselves to unknown chemicals and toxins in order to get a ‘high.’ Giving law enforcement the tools they need to thwart illegal drug manufacturers can help save lives.”

The new law also will make changes to the state’s current schedule of controlled substances in order to reflect the federal controlled substance laws.

This new law has the support of the Pennsylvania District Attorneys Association, the Pennsylvania Fraternal Order of Police, the Pennsylvania State Police, the Pennsylvania Chiefs of Police Association, the Pennsylvania State Police Troopers Association and the state Office of Attorney General.

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