- Associated Press - Friday, August 14, 2015

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - An organization advocating the reform of the nation’s drug laws says New York has adopted a “failed” approach to synthetic marijuana.

The state recently expanded its existing ban on synthetic pot to include new formulations created by drug chemists to circumvent the earlier law. Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the broader ban would combat dangerous substances that are responsible for a surging number of emergency room visits.

The Drug Police Alliance on Thursday criticized the move, which it says reflects outdated “drug war strategies.” A spokesman says criminalization will only push the drugs “underground” and that regulations on sales are a better way of preventing abuse by minors.

Synthetic marijuana is designed to mimic marijuana’s effect on the brain but its different chemical structure is considered far more dangerous.

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