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Police Seize Date-Rape Drugs

Organised Crime detectives have made the biggest ever seizure of liquid party drug "fantasy'' in WA.
About 1.6 litres of designer drug gamma hydroxybutyrate or GHB - the equivalent of 800 doses, each with a street value of up to $40 - was allegedly discovered during a police raid on a Duncraig house on December 30.
The next day, detectives apprehended a 34-year-old Duncraig man as he disembarked a flight from Broome at the Perth Domestic Airport.
The man was charged with possession of a prohibited drug with intent to sell or supply. He has been bailed to appear in the Perth Magistrates Court on January 22.
Police will allege the man, a nightclub sound and lighting technician, sourced the drug from Sydney.
Det Senior Sgt Paul McMurtrie, from the Organised Crimes Squad, said there had only been a few small seizures of the drug in recent years, but its effects were well documented.
He said it had been a known contributor in date rapes, including the high-profile P&O cruise ship case involving Dianne Brimble.
"GHB is extremely potent. It's usually trafficked in quantities of 2ml in the nightclub scene,'' Det Sen-Sgt McMurtrie said.
"In quantities of up to 4ml it can anethatise people and render them unconscious and in quantities of up to 8ml and more it can actually cause a person death.''
"The problem with the drug is that if someone does overdose it does anethatise them and stops them from breathing.'
"If it is administered in a situation like a rave or a nightclub where several people are affected, it could cause extreme turmoil in an emergency department because people that overdose on this drug have to be respirated.''
"The history of GHB, traditionally it was an anesthetic used in hospitals and about 30 years ago it evolved into a drug of choice in the nightclub and rave scene. It has also been linked to incidences of date rape.''
Police believe the drug was manufactured in eastern Europe and Asia and was imported to New South Wales.
Detectives are continuing their inquiries into the source of the drug and expect to interview other people who maybe involved with its importation into WA.

Sunday Times (3-1-2007)
Nicole Cox

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