AN investigation into the sale of psychoactive substances at retail outlets across Perth has resulted in 314 drug charges against 18 people.
The investigation commenced in November and involved both inspections and search warrants conducted under the Misuse of Drugs Act at stores in Rockingham, Mandurah, Armadale, Victoria Park, Wanneroo and Highgate.
This activity occurred in November, January, February, March and July, with some inspections conducted under amendments to the Act related to psychoactive substances.
These inquiries resulted in the seizure of 4573 items, which were taken for further analysis, and the subsequent investigation resulted in 11 people being charged with possessing a prohibited drug with intent to sell or supply, and four people being charged with 38 counts of selling a prohibited drug.
A 20-year-old woman was charged with three counts of possessing a prohibited drug with intent to sell or supply and 57 counts of selling a prohibited a drug.
Another 20-year-old woman was charged with two counts of possessing a prohibited drug with intent to sell or supply and 48 counts of selling a prohibited drug.
A 33-year-old man was charged with 11 counts of possessing with intent to sell or supply, 143 counts of selling a prohibited drug and unlawful possession (cash).
Metropolitan Region North Acting Commander Mary Brown said the charges were a result of a protracted and complex investigation into the sale of psychoactive substances in the community.
“Police and the Mental Health Commission worked with retailers before the psychoactive substances legislation was introduced in an effort to educate them about their responsibilities under the new laws,” Acting Commander Brown said.
“These substances are of significant concern to police, health groups and the broader public, and as such have been and continue to be a focus for WA Police.”
Acting Commander Brown said as with all illicit drugs the long-term health impacts could vary and be severe.
The accused people have all been charged by summons, and court dates and locations are yet to be confirmed.
If anyone has any questions about their own, or their loved one’s alcohol and drug use they can call Alcohol and Drug Support Line for free, confidential counselling, support and referral on 9442 5000 or 1800 198 024 country callers toll free.
Parents can also call the Parent and Family Drug Support Line on 9442 5000 or 1800 653 203 country callers toll free.