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Flakka Fears: Is deadly synthetic drug the new crack cocaine?

Flakka has fueled a new drug epidemic in South Florida that experts are now comparing to the crack cocaine curse of the 1980s, but with the rise of online drug dealing, are the Feds fighting a losing battle? Investigative reporter Carmel Cafiero is on the case.

Bizarre behavior on the streets of South Florida is nothing new, and it can be caused by any number of substances. But the latest drug being sold here, flakka, has been dubbed “five-dollar insanity.”

Police say it’s behind a number of strange incidents in Broward, including a man running naked through the streets to another impaled on a fence. And flakka is a killer. It is blamed in the deaths of 24 people in Broward County alone in less than a year. People here are paying the price for a drug being made on the other side of the world.

Robert Hutchinson, Deputy Special Agent in Charge: “From what we’re seeing, the great majority is manufactured from China, shipped from China.”

Robert Hutchinson, a top Homeland Security official in Miami, says the agency is working with the DEA and State Department to combat the synthetic drug problem in China. But it’s a challenge. The chemical in flakka, “alpha-PVP,” is not yet illegal in China.

Robert Hutchinson: “It is very difficult when the source nation does not see it as a problem or an illegal item. When they’re looking at it as just a chemical, as a chemical, you would not think about in a million years to ingest.”

But addicts are ingesting it, and at an alarming rate. Two Central Florida men were recently arrested, accused of planning to bring a half-million dollars worth of flakka from China to Broward County.

The Heat Reporter
The Heat Reporter
Known in entertainment circles as "LA Dre", the Editor of The Heat Magazine works tirelessly to bring you the latest & greatest in entertainment news. He spent years in the industry & now brings some of that insider knowledge to his readers.


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