WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — A novel New Zealand law could legalize some so-called "party pills" and other designer drugs.
The new law represents a U-turn from the traditional approach of banning synthetic drugs. Instead New Zealand will allow their sale if they pass rigorous safety testing similar to that for pharmaceuticals.
The law is getting attention in other countries that have struggled to keep up with a proliferation of designer drugs. Sold under street names such as "spice," and "bath salts," designer drugs often mimic banned substances such as marijuana, ecstasy and methamphetamine.
A New Zealand health official estimated it would cost manufacturers about 2 million New Zealand dollars ($1.6 million) and take about a year to get a drug approved.