TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — The United States District Court sentenced 28 defendants who were charged with manufacturing and distributing the controlled substance known as "spice."
Part of their sentence included forfeiting residences and businesses, 12 vehicles, and over $532,000 in U.S. currency.
Spice is a synthetic cannabinoid made with chemicals, federal officials say. The chemicals are either sprayed or dried on shredded plant material that can be smoked or sold as liquid that can be inhaled when vaporized. The U.S. Attorney's Office says the chemicals can be dangerous and often labeled as "not for human consumption."
A two-year investigation by numerous local and federal authorities discovered that "spice" suppliers in Colorado and Arizona, imported precursor chemicals from China and then manufactured the controlled substance in southern California, Tucson, and Phoenix.
The substance was then distributed to smoke shops in Tucson, Dallas/Fort Worth, and other cities.