September 16, 2019  Last Update: November 27, 2017, 8:52 pm

How Much Synthetic Narcotic is $30 Million?

Bath Salts like Kryptonite, and Synthetic marijuana like "K2" and "spice" are more expensive than gold.

On November 8,  authorities seized $30 million dollars worth of synthetic narcotics in Las Vegas, Nevada. How much drug is that?

At $40-$60 per gram for synthetic marijuana (cannabinoids such as “spice”),  or  $40-$90 per gram for “bath salts” (cathinones like “Kryptonite”), that $30 million is a mere 700 pounds of drugs. Even a large car or small van can hold that.  The prices of these synthetics are approaching the price of cocaine, which is well known as a very expensive drug.

Bath salts are not illegal is Las Vegas. At up to $90 per gram for bath salts, it must be one of the most profitable legal substances sold.  For reference, gold is selling for around $55 per gram right now. So these synthetic drugs are more expensive than gold. Another way to envision $30 million worth? Two people could load 700 lbs of goods into one minivan in less than 30 minutes.

DEA agents are suggesting that some of these drugs are 10 times as powerful (for hallucinations) as L.S.D. and the reason is the chemistry. Chemists are creating them specifically for their potency. Unlike drugs derived from natural sources, where more work is needed to obtain more powerful concentrations of chemical components, these synthetic drugs are created to wreak havoc on the nervous system. Once a specific compound is known to produce the desired effects, it can be made cheaply in large quantities.

In 2009, only 15 synthetic cannabinoids were submitted to forensic labs for testing. In 2010, 2,977 were tested. The DEA lists synthetic cannabinoids and cathinones as an emerging drug problem in the US.

 

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