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2 herbs added to controlled substance list


PROVIDENCE — Two plants which can be used as hallucinogenic drugs have been added to the list of controlled substances under legislation signed by Gov. Lincoln Chaffee

Salvia divinorum and gypsum or jimsom weed were added to the list of substances now regulated as of June 3 under the state law.

According to sponsors Rep. Arthur J. Corvese, D-North Providence, and Sen. Frank S. Lombardi, D-Cranston, the law is meant to target unregulated substances that are being sold at various locations as a means to give purchasers a “high.” Adding the drugs to the Schedule 1 list bans their possession, production and sale, and makes violations subject to the same penalties as those for marijuana and other drugs, say sponsors.

The sponsors said the drugs can be found at some convenience stores and gas stations, and their availability can give people the false impression that their high is somehow safe. Jimson weed, or datura stramonium, can be fatally toxic.

Although neither of the drugs is currently banned under federal law, several states have taken action to control the two drugs due to reports of their abuse.

Last year, the state added synthetic cannabinoids, synthetic substances with more dangerous side effects than the naturally occurring drug they mimic, to the list.

— A.J. Algier



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