A police commissioner has been fiercely criticised after calling for the legalisation of so-called “zombie drugs”.
Arfon Jones, Police Commissioner for North Wales, said that new psychoactive substances (NPS) with names such as ‘Spice’ and ‘Black Mamba’ should be made legal again, after an outright ban by the Government in May last year.
Over the last few months, young people have been photographed in a zombie-like state in some city centres after taking the substances.
Welsh Assembly member Darren Millar described the calls as “outrageous”, saying: “I find his views a disgrace.
“These drugs are very dangerous and act as gateways to even more dangerous drugs.
“They ruin lives. We need fewer drugs in our society, not more.”
Another Assembly member, Janet Finch-Saunders, added that Jones’ comments were “irresponsible”.
Legal highs ban
Last year, the Government introduced a blanket ban on the substances, also known as legal highs.
Officials had been banning the drugs on a case-by-case basis, however manufacturers could simply tweak the chemical composition of the substances and sell them legally again.
Speaking at the introduction of the legal high ban, a Government Minister said: “Too many lives have been lost or ruined by the dangerous drugs formerly referred to as ‘legal highs’.
“That is why we have taken action to stamp out this brazen trade. The Psychoactive Substances Act sends a clear message – these drugs are not legal, they are not safe and we will not allow them to be sold in this country.”