Legal highs are sent for testing after PSNI raid on Larne shop

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Larne police have seized “suspected new psychoactive substances” – otherwise known as legal highs – from a shop in Larne.

The products taken from the premises at Dunluce Street yesterday afternoon are to be tested to establish whether they fall under the scope of Misuse of Drugs Act.

The search and seizure follows an incident on Thursday morning when, as previously reported the Larne Times online, three people were taken to hospital after they were believed to have taken alcohol together with a quantity of legal highs. All three were said in a stable condition in hospital today.

PSNI AREA Commander, Chief Insp Catherine Magee, said of the raid: “Police seized these products to establish whether they contain substances prohibited under the Misuse of Drugs Act.

“The testing is part of an ongoing investigation concerned with three people falling ill earlier this week.

“I understand that the sale and use of legal highs is an issue of community concern in Larne. Police continue to work with residents, the local council and health authorities to ensure that anything which could compromise the safety of the public is taken off the streets. However, unless a product is illegal, police cannot prevent its sale.

“The bottom line is that health professionals suspect that so-called legal highs contain dangerous substances which are harmful to health. There is always a risk in taking a mind-altering substance, legal or illegal.”

Chief Insp Magee cautioned: “With mind altering substances, you can never be sure of exactly what you are taking, or what possible side effects it could have. Everyone has personal responsibility, but I would encourage people to think about the potential consequences. Is the perceived benefit really worth the risk?”