A TOP detective is warning about the dangers of a designer drug which is on the increase on Blackpool’s party scene.
Det Chief Insp Tim Leeson, from Lancashire Police’s serious and organised crime unit, is urging parents to check for signs of their children taking mephedrone – or ‘bubble’ as it is known on the street.
The drug, which was made illegal two years ago, is on the surge – prompting police to carry out raids in the resort which led to the arrest of 16 people.
Det Chief Insp Leeson said: “Mephedrone is on the increase because it’s cheaper but the message we want to get across is it is illegal.
“A lot of it comes from China. It’s one of these designer drugs which is morphing all the time. Some people are always looking to get around the law, they will develop it and not test it. It only gets tested at the point of sale.
“There is a lack of understanding around bubble as it was only made illegal in April 2010.
“We are finding it is on the increase across the North West.
“We have done a lot of work around Blackpool because that is where our intelligence has picked up information, with the drugs testing which is carried out when people go into custody.”
Raids were carried out in North Shore, Layton, Grange Park, Marton, Fleetwood and St Annes a fortnight ago.
But earlier in the year, police uncovered Lancashire’s biggest ever haul of mephedrone in Blackpool.
Around 24 kgs of the drug, with an estimated street value of more than £120,000, was seized in January.
Det Chief Insp Leeson added: “We want people to enjoy a safe night out in Blackpool but people need to have awareness. We have not had a death in Lancashire fortunately but there have sadly been fatalities which have been attributed to mephedrone across parts of the country.
“Parents and grandparents should check whether their children are aware of the dangers. The effects of this drug may be played down by the youth. It can lead to people being aggressive and violent when taken with other drugs and alcohol.”