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[s31] Gov. Pence Signs Sen. Merritt’s Bill to Strengthen Indiana’s Synthetic Drug Ban
Start Date: 5/13/2013Start Time: 12:00 AM
End Date: 5/14/2013End Time: 11:59 PM
Entry Description

STATEHOUSE (May 9, 2013) — State Sen. Jim Merritt’s (R-Indianapolis) legislation tightening Indiana’s ban on dangerous synthetic drugs was signed into law recently by Gov. Mike Pence.


Merritt said Senate Enrolled Act 536 closes a critical loophole in the state’s previous ban by making it illegal to possess or deal “look-alike” synthetic drugs. 


Under the previous ban, substances were identified as synthetic drugs based on their chemical makeup. Because of the nature of these lab-created substances, Merritt said synthetic drug manufacturers were able to slightly alter their ingredients and skirt state laws. He said passing SEA 536 was one of his top priorities this session to protect young Hoosiers from these dangerous substances that continue to pop up on store shelves.


“Drug manufactures find new ways every day to target young people with unsafe, illegal substances that can lead to serious health issues and long-term drug-abuse problems,” Merritt said. “We must continue to adapt Indiana’s drug laws as these new substances arise. I’m grateful for the dedication of law enforcement, state and local officials and community members who continue to fight for safer streets in Indianapolis and across this state.”


Merritt was joined for the ceremonial signing of SEA 536 by representatives of the Indiana State Police, the office of Indiana’s Attorney General and the Indiana Prosecuting Attorney Council – all of which were strong supporters of the new synthetic drug ban.

“Many states with synthetic drug laws are struggling to find a comprehensive way to crack down on these substances that can be easily manipulated to evade state laws,” Merritt said. “Today’s ban breaks new ground on this issue and I hope it will serve as a blueprint to other states in the fight against these poisons in our community.”

SEA 536 takes effect immediately.






Contact Information:
Name: Molly Johnson
Phone: 317-234-9133
Entry Type:
Press Release
Entry Category:
  • Announcements
  • Category:
  • Government
  • Agency Name
    Senate Republican Caucus

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