Arbroath head shop hit by police

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The campaign against ‘Legal Highs’ has reached a “legally ground-breaking” point in the wake of simultaneous raids on three ‘head shops’.

On Monday morning Operation Carinate saw over 30 officers swoop on three businesses in Arbroath, Montrose and Perth which sold New Psychoactive Substances (NPS), or ‘Legal Highs’ as they are more commonly known.

A dozen officers targeted ‘Evape-O-Lution’ on Brothock Bridge, formerly ‘Declaration’ which had closed recently in the midst of much public criticism for its sale of NPS.

Sergeant Gordon Fotheringham of the Arbroath Community Flex Team led the raid at Brothock Bridge. He said: “This operation is in response to the irresponsible sale and consumption of what we term NPS, misleadingly referred to as legal highs.

“If they take some of these products it can have quite a medical impact on people. We’ve found through examination that some of these do contain controlled drugs.

“They don’t know exactly what the make up is of these products which part of the problem.”

The definition of an irresponsible sale is to sell a product to a person knowing that they will then misuse the product.

Speaking on Monday Police Scotland’s Local Area Commander for Angus Gordon Milne said: “Today has seen the execution of several search warrants granted to Police Scotland to enter various properties, search for and then seize articles and other evidence which we believe will be evidence of criminal acts.

“This follows on from months of intelligence gathering and enquiries by Angus based officers into the sale and supply of NPS substances. We are working very closely with the Crown Office and Procurators Fiscal Service both locally and nationally as much of our work in terms of dealing with the supply of NPS is legally ground-breaking.

“The physical evidence which we have secured today will be assessed over the next couple of weeks, which will then dictate the future directions of our enquiries. Ultimately, as soon as possible, we hope to submit reports to the Procurator Fiscal.”

Derek Wann from the Campaign Against Legal Highs in Arbroath and Montrose said: “This news is welcomed by our group and we are delighted that the police have reacted so quickly. We were disappointed when the shop re-opened and found out from your article in the Herald last week that they were still selling NPS, had they just been selling E Cigarettes we would not have had any issue with them. Let’s hope this now shows the owners of the shops that our communities do not want these substances sold in our High Streets.”