Fake Cocaine

On June 4 Steven Decker of Muscatine, Iowa sold a white powder to an undercover agent. He said it was cocaine, but it wasn't. It was fake cocaine. In the eyes of the law, this doesn't let him off the hook. He's being charged with "delivery of a simulated controlled substance" and is looking at up to ten years in prison and $50,000 in fines.

I'm sure Decker is not exactly a boy-scout, but being charged for selling fake cocaine is a curious concept. Added irony: he was selling a simulated controlled substance to a simulated controlled substance buyer.

Con Artists Law/Police/Crime

Posted on Tue Nov 25, 2008


What's even worse, he's getting a harsher sentance than the people dealing REAL drugs do around here. (from IA)
Posted by rachellyn  on  Tue Nov 25, 2008  at  11:17 AM
That's the best definition of simulacrum I've ever heard, ever.
Posted by Jess  on  Tue Nov 25, 2008  at  11:55 AM
This happens all the time all over the place Alex ... ...


New York

Kansas (section 14-901H)


Posted by oppiejoe  on  Tue Nov 25, 2008  at  01:25 PM
I hear, pray tell, that you get hammered a LOT worse, in a lot of states, for selling the fake stuff instead of the real goods... California (I hear) is one of the worst places to get caught doing that...
Posted by Christopher  on  Tue Nov 25, 2008  at  04:18 PM
Quick! Someone reset the simulation...
Posted by Tron  on  Tue Nov 25, 2008  at  08:22 PM
I'm reminded of the kids wo traded photos of their genitals to a creepy guy for beer.. It was later found out they'd actually just snagged some photos off the 'net to cheat the guy with.
Posted by Robin Bobcat  on  Wed Nov 26, 2008  at  04:08 AM
:lol: @ Robin
Posted by oppiejoe  on  Wed Nov 26, 2008  at  06:38 AM
I think the point of punishing people even more for selling fake drugs is that sometimes the fake drugs are even more dangerous than the real ones. Cocaine is bad enough, but if somebody decides to grab some random white powder off a shelf and sell that as cocaine, then you could have lots of people snorting or shooting up on arsenic or something.

Besides, it's false advertising. . .
Posted by Accipiter  on  Wed Nov 26, 2008  at  12:24 PM
I think this is true: some years ago in Sheffield a particularly pure batch of heroin was being sold on the streets. An official warning was issued (by the police?) advising the drug using community that heroin currently in circulation hadn't been cut as much as usual and to be careful not to accidentally overdose....or so the story goes.
Posted by Pixie  on  Thu Nov 27, 2008  at  01:26 PM
I recall people being busted for fake acid tabs in the UK, but there is no separate law here, I think it's an 'intent' thing. I guess with the LSD it could be an honest mistake, but it takes ~10 seconds to verify cocaine. My heart bleeds not at all to the fake coke dealer.

@pixie: yes, I have seen warning notices in drug clinics in the UK warning about pure or adulterated batched of heroin - very pragmatic too, eg: 'if it goes black when you are cooking up it's probably cut heavily with barbiturates - DON'T SHOOT IT'
Posted by john hackworth  on  Sat Dec 27, 2008  at  04:24 AM
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