Australia bans 19 synthetic drugs


Australia imposed an interim ban on 19 synthetic cannabis and cocainelike drugs on Sunday as part of a crackdown on the psychoactive substances, which mimic the highs of their illegal counterparts.

Assistant Treasurer David Bradbury said the 19 products would be banned from sale and supply for up to 120 days under consumer laws, a measure that will give states and territories time to update their laws to ban them.

Bradbury said the market is fast-moving and suppliers have shown a willingness to change brand names and packaging to get around bans made under consumer laws.

The government will also develop legislation to ensure unauthorized synthetic drugs cannot be imported.