The act lists the herbs and substances the growing, production, manufacturing, transformation, offer, sale, distribution, acquisition, purchase and illegal possession of which now amount to crime.
The effects produced by these substances are similar to those of the psychotropic substances, as they have a direct effect on the brain, create confusion, loss of identity, hallucination, curbed attention and such adverse effects as strong headache combined with severe panic attacks, Health Minister Cseke Attila said after the Government’s meeting.
Among the above-mentioned herbs and substances that are now illegal, Cseke also cited bath salt that creates an addiction and that has already caused several deaths.
The stocks of such banned substances should be destroyed by the owners or possessors 10 days since the ordinance takes effect, but this should be done only in laboratories and companies authorised for their destruction.
The cultivation, production and sale of the risk drugs shall be punished by three to 15 years in prison, while the high-risk drugs carry sentences ranging from 10 to 20 years in prison.
Buying or possessing the risk drugs for one’s personal unauthorised consumption is punishable by six months to two years imprisonment or by a fine, while in the case of the high-risk drugs the sentence is two to five years imprisonment.
More than 1,000 persons required assistance in 2009 after having taken such substances and herbs. In early 2009, there were 18 shops that traded the now-banned substances, while at the end of August the number of such shops had surged to 121, i.e. a 672 percent rise. The number of the shops had tripled since August, Government’s spokeswoman Ioana Muntean said by citing Police statistic figures.
The Romanian Government on Wednesday decided to ban the trade, possession and use of 36 hallucinogenic substances and plants by equalling them to illicit drugs.
‘We are suggesting that 27 substances and nine plants be included in the annex of banned substances to Law 143/2000 by banning and equalling them to illicit drugs,’ said Health Minister Cseke Attila.