Chemicals seized

Charges are pending against nine people in B.C. after police say they broke up an organization that was planning to make synthetic drugs like crystal meth and ecstasy.

VANCOUVER — Charges are pending against nine people in B.C. after police say they broke up an organization that was planning to make synthetic drugs like crystal meth and ecstasy.

The RCMP say the year-long investigation culminated in the seizure of about 20 barrels of the chemicals needed to make the drugs, as well as 14,000 ecstasy pills, more than $250,000 in cash and seven guns.

Seven men and two women ranging in age from 32 to 53 from Richmond, Vancouver and Abbotsford could face a variety of charges including conspiracy to produce a controlled substance and possession for the purpose of trafficking.

The investigation is linked to a chemical seizure in Edmonton in which two men were arrested, and police say the entire plot has links to Asian gangs.

Solicitor General Kash Heed says one of the problems in controlling the manufacture of synthetic drugs is a lack of federal regulations on importing and tracking the chemicals involved.

He says the B.C. government will continue to press the federal government for tougher regulations on the issue.

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