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A national campaign by the police and supported by the Home Office, the National Crime Agency and UK Border Force aimed at tackling the issue of so-called ‘legal highs’ starts today (Monday, 25th November, 2013).

Forces from across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, co-ordinated by TITAN (the North-West Regional Organised Crime Unit), will be conducting a range of activities aimed at raising awareness of the health risks posed by substances sold as ‘legal highs’ .

This activity includes; personal visits by officers and letters to people thought to have purchased such commodities, enforcement activity such as targeting suppliers together with a range of initiatives aimed at stemming the supply of these products over the internet.

Detective Chief Superintendent Dermott Horrigan, the head of TITAN, said it was important that the public realised the potential dangers of these drugs.

He said: “Just because a substance is sold in a shop or on the internet as ‘legal’ does not mean it is legal or safe, and sadly there are clever people out there making a lot of money by selling drugs under the misnomer ‘legal highs’ which may in fact pose a risk to people’s health.

“The reality is that many of these products either contain controlled substances which are illegal or uncontrolled substances whose side-effects cannot be predicted.   “Either way, recent research by TITAN has established that people selling these products are profiting on a significant scale and this week’s campaign is about sending a clear message throughout the country  as to the potential health risks from products labelled ‘legal highs’.

“It is also about educating people about the consequences of using these products. These include damage to job prospects, reputational impact and travel restrictions caused through having a conviction.”

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