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February 23, 2012
For More Information, contact:
Luther Strange
Joy Patterson (334) 242-7491
Alabama Attorney General
Suzanne Webb (334) 242-7351
Page 1 of 2

Bills on synthetic drugs and metal theft
are moving through Alabama Legislature
(MONTGOMERY) – Attorney General Luther Strange announced the progress of
bills in his legislative package so far, noting in particular bills about synthetic drugs and
metal theft that are moving through the Alabama Legislature.
Attorney General Strange said he is pleased with the quick action taken by both
the House and the Senate on legislation to ban synthetic drugs. House Bill 158 and its
companion, Senate Bill 208 are often referred to as the “spice” bill. Although the Senate
and House each has approved its own “spice” bill, one version will have to be approved
by both the Senate and the House before its final approval is achieved.
“This legislation is vital for public health and safety,” said Attorney General
Strange. “When easy availability over store counters was endangering the people of
Alabama, we took action with the State Department of Public Health to regulate and
fight these dangerous substances. Now we need the power of this law to give officers
better tools to combat this threat and to provide strong penalties for offenders. Our
citizens can be proud of the leadership by the sponsors of this important measure,
Representatives Allen Farley and Randy Wood, and Senator Arthur Orr.”
HB 158 & SB 208 regulates synthetic marijuana and other similar substances.
Synthetic substances that mimic marijuana or other drugs, often referred to as “spice,”
“bath salts” or various other names, are being created with chemical compounds which
had not been identified and prohibited as controlled substances under state law. The
State Department of Public Health previously has taken regulatory action regarding
this, and now the classification of the chemicals and chemical compounds as controlled
substances under state law would give law enforcement stronger tools to combat their
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501 Washington Avenue * Montgomery, AL 36104 * (334) 242-7300
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The Legislature also has acted upon Senate Bill 35 to fight metal theft. The
Senate gave its approval to the bill, which still needs to pass through the House of
Representatives. Senate Bill 35 arises from The Metal Theft Task Force, organized in
2011 to develop legislation to deal with the increasingly widespread theft of copper and
other metals. Members of the coalition include manufacturers, secondary recyclers,
business, law enforcement, church leaders, and others who have been impacted metal
theft. This legislation will strengthen existing law by creating a statewide digital
database, increasing criminal penalties, putting limits on cash transactions and many
other safeguards.
“I commend Sen. Ben Brooks and Rep. Cam Ward for their dedication in
sponsoring this legislation to combat metal theft,” said Attorney General Strange. “This
is a crime that strikes against many throughout our society to crime, damaging and
destroying the personal property of our citizens, small businesses, churches, and
Additional bills in the legislative package advocated by Attorney General
Strange that are pending action propose better ways to fight illegal gambling, protect
citizens from false legal documents and sham legal proceedings, preserve law
enforcement benefits, to combat looting, and regarding disarming of law enforcement