The number of new substances assisting the manufacture of synthetic drugs and intercepted in Belgium reached a record high last year, according to figures from the Belgian Early Warning System on Drugs (BEWSD). So says the newspaper Het Belang van Limburg echoed on Wednesday. At the current time, most of these substances are not illegal but a new law anticipated for this autumn could make them so.
Last year, a mind-bending new 120 psychoactive substances were detected in Belgium, or a third more than in 2014. The issue revolves around synthetic derivatives of drugs already in existence, such as XTC (ecstasy), cannabis, LSD and speed. These new substances are equally dubbed “legal highs” to the extent that they are not yet illegal.
Cathinone and Phenethylamine are the most popular and are often intercepted at customs in large quantities by Belgian Customs authorities. “More than 80 kilos of synthetic cannabis and around 90 kilos of cathinone were thus intercepted,” Peter Blanckaert of BEWSD commented.
He is relying upon the Institut Scientifique de Santé Publique (Scientific Institute for Public Health) for these figures. “However, still more serious, half a kilo of synthetic opiate was also seized. This may seem very little, but the public should understand that the mind-blowing active ingredient is present, even in a milligram. The amount seized is therefore in fact enormous and, for its potency, easily compares to tens of kilos of heroine,” M. Blanckaert adds.