ARNOLD (KDKA) — It’s a raid.
Armed with warrants, state and local police descend on the Stop ‘N Go in Arnold, Westmoreland County.
Twenty minutes later, they marched out the store owner, identified as 42-year-old Seif Shuman.
They are now charging him with selling synthetic marijuana, which are herbs treated with chemicals and sold under names such as Spice and K2.
Police accuse Shuman and his two brothers of selling the powerful drug in shiny little packets for as much as $30 for five grams.
On Thursday, they also confiscate an Uzi, a submachine gun, and a shotgun from behind the counter.
“He’s selling synthetic marijuana. He’s got weapons to protect his stash and/or his profits,” said Jeff Brautigam, of Pennsylvania State Police. “Just goes to show, there must be a lot of money in it when you have to have weaponry like this.”
The arrest is the culmination of a year of undercover buys in which police say they eventually confiscated $300,000 in cash and 50 pounds of synthetic pot, which they say has now been tested and determined to be a controlled substance.
“It’s lot of money and a lot of synthetic marijuana that gets on the street to these young kids,” Brautigam said.
After Shuman was taken away, his attorney Duke George arrived on the scene.
KDKA’s Andy Sheehan: “They believe that your client is running this highly-profitable, highly-dangerous synthetic marijuana racket.”
George: “You just said it. They believe, now they have to prove it. Not easy to prove.”
The case is a first in our area. Arnold Chief William Weber conceded it’s hard to stay on top of new drugs like synthetic pot.
“What are they going to come up with next?” he said. “Is there something else that is going to cause us new problems. We’re a little behind the curve all the time.”
State Police Working To Shut Down Shops Selling Synthetic Marijuana (2/1/13)
More Reports from Andy Sheehan