Largest synthetic drug bust affects Paris

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PARIS, TX - Wednesday afternoon the DEA announced the take down of an intercontinental synthetic drug ring they're calling "Project Synergy."

"This particular synthetic drug industry is making millions and millions of dollars and money is flowing back globally around the world and specifically in the Middle East." said the DEA's Derek Maltz.

The operation spanned five countries, 35 states including Texas and resulted in more than 75 arrests and $15-million in cash and assets.

Paris Police Chief Bob Hundley says the illegal sale of "K-2" and bath salts has plagued his town for more than three years.

"It's phenomenal that we got the amount of drugs that the DEA seized just almost globally off the market, so to speak." said Hundley. "I'm especially happy that we got a lot of that drug taken off the streets here in Paris."

Hundley says in his 38-years in law enforcement, he's never seen another drug pose a bigger challenge to authorities than synthetic marijuana.

"It was trying to hit an extremely moving target, because anytime you could settle on what a chemical was, they would change it." said Hundley.

The DEA joined Paris Police as they executed warrants at four homes and two businesses in the city over the past few months.

One report from Paris Police states a dealer was spending $150,000 to bring synthetic marijuana to Paris, every month.

Hundley says he's pleased with the results of the sting, but says this is just one battle in an ongoing war on synthetic drugs.

"I'm not going to be naive about it, there will be somebody else that will want to step in and try their hand at it." said Hundley.

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