Detectives from PSNI Reactive and Organised Crime Branch working in partnership with the National Crime Agency have recovered a substantial quantity of material used as a mixing agent to increase the volume of illegal drugs.
20 kilograms of the material was intercepted on route to an address in the Ballymena area earlier this week. A search of the address was carried out this morning ( Saturday 2nd April ) and a 38 year old man was arrested at the scene. A further quantity of mixing agent was recovered at the address along with other items including documentation, mobile phones and drug paraphernalia. The man is currently in custody assisting officers with their enquiries.
Detective Inspector Tom McClure from Reactive and Organised Crime Branch said: “Drug dealers will seek to maximise their by profits by mixing Class A and B controlled drugs with adulterant substances intended to imitate the desired effects or physical characteristics of the drug to be cut. In addition to the very significant health risks posed by controlled drugs, some of the substances used as mixing agents can also have serious health effects on the user. On this occasion we have seized a large quantity of the pharmaceutical chemical Procaine Hydrochloride which we believe was intended to be mixed with controlled drugs to increase their market value. We believe that this seizure has caused significant disruption to an organised criminal gang.”
Detective Inspector McClure continued; “The importation of such chemicals is an essential element in the chain of supply of drugs. People who think they can import these substances without fear of prosecution need to think again.
The PSNI will vigorously pursue anyone who is knowingly involved in the importation of drug cutting agents intended for use in the preparation and supply of controlled drugs.”