Import ban imposed on ‘Ivory Wave’

By Ian Dunt

An import ban has been imposed on a legal high blamed for several hospitalisations in the UK.

Ivory Wave, which can bought on the internet, has been the subject of a media campaign similar to that which greeted legal high mephedrone.

“Banning the importation of this harmful substance sends out a clear message to unscrupulous traffickers trying to start a market here for their dangerous drugs,” said crime prevention minister James Brokenshire.

The decision follows advice from the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD).

“The ACMD’s advice on ‘Ivory Wave’ reinforces what we already know – that substances touted as ‘legal highs’ contain dangerous and illegal substances,” Mr Brokenshire added.

“Users need to understand they could be breaking the law and risk seriously damaging their mental and physical health.”

The ACMD admitted, however, that there was no substantial use of the drug, properly known as of 2-DPMP, in the UK. The move was being taken to stop it gaining a “foothold” in the country.

But authorities are wary of legal highs following the media outrage over mephedrone, otherwise known as miaow miaow, when tabloids published a series of stories suggesting the drug was linked to several deaths.

Many of those stories were later shown to be inaccurate, leading to complaints that the ACMD had become politicised following the sacking of Professor David Nutt by former home secretary Alan Johnson.