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City Urged to Outlaw GHB

LA Times
November 20, 1996


After testimony by Los Angeles police narcotics investigators, the city Police Commission Tuesday voted to urge Mayor Richard Riordan and other city officials to support legislation that would outlaw GHB, the lethal--but legal--drug that sent six Hollywood nightclub-goers to the hospital last weekend. [Erowid Note: GHB became illegal to possess or sell in March 2000]

GHB, a mixture that contains lye and industrial solvents, acts as a depressant and has been linked to at least three deaths nationwide. Although banned from commercial sale in 1990 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, homemade versions have become increasingly popular in Hollywood's underground party scene. LAPD detectives said they were unable to arrest anyone in the Hollywood incident over the weekend because the lethal liquid is not registered as an illegal narcotic.

Similarly, no arrests were made in a Huntington Beach case earlier this month in which three women and a man lost consciousness or became sick after someone apparently slipped GHB into their drinks at a nightclub. Investigators from the LAPD's narcotics group told the commission that outlawing the substance would help deter its use. LAPD investigators lobbied similarly last year to ban the sale and possession of Rohypnol, the so-called date rape drug.