Southern Ill. retailer turns over synthetic drugs to authorities

MOUNT VERNON, IL (KFVS) - The Illinois Attorney General's office says a retailer in Mt. Vernon has turned over nearly 1500 packages of synthetic drugs.

The 1,466 packages of illegal synthetic drugs with a street value of $40,792 were given to police by a Mount Vernon retailer on Tuesday, making it the largest amount turned over to date in "Operation Smoked Out," a statewide initiative aimed at eliminating the dangerous drugs from Illinois retail stores.

Investigators from the attorney general's office joined Jefferson County Sheriff's deputies and Mount Vernon Police in the compliance operation at Blind Tiger on 825 Newby Avenue.

"This operation was a significant step toward removing these dangerous drugs from southern Illinois store shelves. It should send a strong message that we will not tolerate the sale of these potentially deadly substances," Attorney General Lisa Madigan said.

Illegal drugs were also seized at Main Street Records, 313 S. 10th Street. There were 169 packages with a  street value of $4,276. A return visit to a Mount Vernon store which had previously sold illegal synthetic drug products found the store in compliance with the law.

"Hats off to Attorney General Madigan's staff for their assistance and to her leadership in attacking this public health issue," Jefferson County Sheriff Roger Mulch said. "Our coordinated effort was successful in closing down some real problem areas."

In all, retailers in Mount Vernon and Marion relinquished 1,655 packages of synthetic drugs with a street value of more than $45,600.

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