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Synthetic drugs sellers appear to continue dealing after federal indictments

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ST. PETERS, MO (KPLR) - Synthetic drug dealers continue selling potentially deadly products despite last month`s Federal indictment of 28 drug conspirators and seizure of tens of millions of dollars.  Fox Files investigator Chris Hayes went right back to the streets to show how they`re still trying to get away with it.

Our story begins with hidden camera video inside a St. Charles County t-shirt store called Jester`s.  A clerk told a costumer about '$45 Pirates Booty and Get Real.'  The clerk was talking about products just exposed in a drug bust by agencies like the DEA and Homeland Security.

Our undercover producer asked, 'Can I see it?'  The clerk held up a package of 'Get Real.'  It`s $45 for a 5 gram package.  We didn`t buy it because it`s illegal, but as one anonymous source explained, the dealers won`t stop.  The source said, 'They`re greedy.  They want money.'

A recent Federal drug trafficking indictment even naming one of the products we`ve since found for sale - Pirates Booty.  Our street sources say there`s a trick to getting it.  The anonymous source said, 'They would have to trust you. You would have to go through somebody who has already been getting it.'

We followed instructions to begin at South 94th Convenience in St. Charles County.  A clerk said, 'You have to ask the boss.'  The clerk added, 'It`s a separate transaction.'

A manager said he`s still waiting on product and explained how some of the drugs are now illegal so he`s waiting on a newer legal version.  The manager said, 'When they changed the regulation, they have to come up with new stuff that complies with the regulation they tell us a week, sometimes a month, two months.'   Then he told us where to go.  The manager gave a location and said, 'It`s called Jester`s or Chester`s.'

That`s where we found the reported 'Get Real' and 'Pirates Booty' for sale.  So I went in with our FOX2 camera to see if she`d sell to me.

I said, 'Chris Hayes with FOX2. I was looking for some `Get Real.`

The clerk responded, 'Don`t have any.'

(Hayes) 'Pirate`s Booty.'

(Clerk)  'Don`t have it.'

(Hayes) 'Now you were willing to sell it last week.'

(Clerk) 'I`ve been out of town. I`m back and this is what we`ve got t-shirts and incense and tapestries.'  The clerk added, 'I have not been here. I`m helping Mike out.'

(Hayes) 'We have you on camera.'

(Clerk) 'I haven`t been here I`ve been out of town.'

(Hayes) 'We`ve got you on camera. Why would you continue to sell this stuff even after federal indictments?'  The clerk answered, 'I don`t have it. I`m out of town.'

Then she called her boss and said over the phone, `Chris Hayes up here harassing me. Just wanted to let you know so..'  She then waved for us to leave and said, 'Hah see you later (waiving).'

Then we returned to South 94th convenience.

Hayes told the manager, 'It sounds like you`re trying to find a way to evade the law and continue to sell it.'  The manager responded, 'No, no, no, we when they first came out with it we used to sell it like anybody else.  We don`t sell it anymore.'

(Hayes) 'So you`re not going to try to get a new blend? Then why would you tell somebody that?'

(Manager) 'We never told them, has anybody came in and said we told them?'

(Hayes)  'You`re on camera telling somebody that you`re waiting to find a new way to sell it.'

(Manager) 'I have no idea what you`re talking about, seriously.'

The DEA has called synthetic drugs the new frontier of drugs, with no expectation that indictments will shut down other dealers.  That`s because of the tremendous amount of money involved.  However, enforcement seems to be making a difference because emergency room visits are down and some communities are seeing a drop in synthetic drug activity.

Follow Chris Hayes on Facebook and Twitter:
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E-mail chris.hayes@tvstl.com

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