What Is Flakka? 

 October 7, 2015

By  LMW Attorneys

Flakka is a strong, synthetic, hallucinogenic street drug that’s mainly found in Florida. Cheaper than methamphetamine or cocaine, Flakka is also called gravel in other parts of the country. Users can snort, inject, smoke or ingest it orally. Flakka’s primary active ingredient is a stimulant known as alpha-PVP. Because the U.S. Department of Justice only declared this stimulant a controlled substance in 2014, large quantities of alpha-PVP have made their way into the United States from overseas manufacturing facilities. Alpha-PVP is the cousin of the active ingredient in the street drug bath salts.

Who Uses Flakka?

Because of its low cost, as little as $5 per use, Flakka’s users tend to live in urban, low-income neighborhoods. However, Flakka poses serious risks to any person who uses it.

The Effects of Flakka

Users will experience psychosis initially. Excited delirium sets in, and paranoia is accompanied by violent behavior. Like bath salts, flakka can cause users to experience extreme, spontaneous strength. As with cocaine and methamphetamine, flakka floods the user’s brain with dopamine and serotonin. Unlike cocaine, flakka’s effects can last longer. Flakka users can expect to experience a significant rise in body temperature. This can lead to internal bleeding and multi-organ failure.

The Controlled Substance Issue

Manufacturers and sellers can circumvent the controlled substance issue by stating on packaging that flakka isn’t intended for human consumption. The molecular structures of the active ingredients can also be slightly changed to avoid placement on the controlled substances list. Like any synthetic drug, flacca is illegal under Florida state law, but it’s readily accessible.

Contact Laporte, Mulligan & Werner-Watkins, P.A.

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