Man’s arrest sparks drug health alert

Police have issued a warning about the dangers of 'legal highs'
Police have issued a warning about the dangers of 'legal highs'
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A man has been charged with supplying substances to two youths, sparking a warning on the dangers of ‘legal highs’.

Police in Falkirk confirmed that, after an investigation, a 52-year-old had been arrested and charged with culpable and reckless conduct for supplying two 14-year-olds on December 16 last year.He is expected in court at the end of January.

However, both police and health officials want to stress that the term ‘legal high’ can be misleading as it implies these substances are safe and legal when they are not.

The correct terminology is new psychoactive substances (NPS) and they are produced to create similar effects to illegal drugs such as cocaine, cannabis and ecstasy. However, their chemical structure is different enough to avoid being classified as illegal under the UK Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.

Sergeant David Ferguson of Falkirk Police said: “My advice is simple and straightforward – do not take these substances. Legal doesn’t mean safe, many of these substances contain chemicals which are harmful and toxic to humans.

“Analysis of drug related deaths in Scotland in 2013 revealed that NPS were implicated in 60 cases. This is almost a 50 per cent increase on the year before and clearly shows that NPS can and do kill. Taking them is dangerous and supplying to others, especially juveniles, knowing they intend to take it as a legal high is a criminal offence.”

Anyone requiring more information can visit www.scotland.police.uk or www.knowthescore.info.