NSW government welcomes national interim ban on synthetic drugs
Minister for Fair Trading Anthony Roberts today welcomed the Commonwealth’s national interim ban on potentially harmful synthetic drugs.
Mr Roberts said the interim ban is an important step forward in protecting consumers from synthetic drugs.
“This will help protect people across the nation from these products which have caused significant harm and in some cases fatal side effects,” Mr Roberts said.
The Commonwealth’s ban follows the lead of the NSW Government which issued an interim ban on a range of synthetic drugs on 9 June 2013.
More than 100 Fair Trading officers have been moving across the state to ensure retailers are complying with the interim bans.
Mr Roberts said retailers failing to comply with the interim bans face penalties of $220,000 for an individual or $1.1 million for a corporation.
“Fair Trading has inspected more than 1,000 retailers and only 65 still had synthetic drugs in stock or on their shelves,” Mr Roberts said.
“The 94% compliance rate shows just how effectively consumer regulators and law enforcement agencies can protect the community when working closely together and it allows them to utilise their full range of powers and penalties under the law.
“Fair Trading has received enormous support from the NSW Police Drug Squad and the Local Area Commands across the state.
“This is an important step forward in tackling the scourge of synthetic drugs and I urge the Commonwealth to support this approach by making the national ban permanent, which will help protect consumers across the country,” Mr Roberts said.
“A national approach is essential for stopping the sale and supply of synthetic drugs across the nation and to prevent the importation of drugs into the country.”
Mr Roberts said NSW Fair Trading will continue to work with Police to enforce the interim bans.
Any retailer who defies the ban will be subject to the full array of penalties under the law.
NSW Fair trading enquiries: 13 32 20