Arrests connected with synthetic marijuana

May 18, 2012

Synthetic marijuana has arrived in Western New York.

It goes by many names on the streets:  "Route 69," "Atomic," "Sunshine" and law enforcers say it is very dangerous. Three area men have been  arrested in connection with the sale and distribution of the drug.

The synthetic pot, apparently made in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and shipped here via FedEx, came to the attention of investigators in March.

An undercover agent made numerous purchases of the illicit drug from Speedy Market, a convenience store and suspected distribution center at 1799 Genesee St on Buffalo's east side.  

"The United States Attorney's Office arrested three different men with conspiracy to traffic in synthetic marijuana," announced U.S.Attorney William Hochul. 

"These three arrests represent the first arrests in New York State for some form of distribution of synthetic marijuana."

The suspects are identified as 28-year-old Adel Abdullah of Lackawanna, 45-year-old Mohammed Alawi of Lackawanna, and 34-year-old Mohammed Albanaa of Buffalo.    All face felony drug charges. 

According to law enforcers, this synthetic pot is being sold under the counter for $10 a package in many convenience-type stores in Buffalo and some suburban locations and is a favorite of the young.