The Woodstock Smoke 911 shop was one of four in north metro where federal search warrants were executed related to "bath salts" and synthetic marijuana.
The shops in Acworth, Sandy Springs and Roswell also were searched, as were the Marietta residences of Michael T. Madlem, owner of the stores.
In addition, federal seizure warrants were executed for bank accounts of Michael T. Madlem, Serena P. Burkard, and Mad Dog USA Enterprises LLC.
No arrests were made today.
The warrants are seeking evidence related to synthetic marijuana and “bath salts.” “Bath salts” are synthetic cathinones, which are typically sold in powder and pill form for approximately $60-$100 per gram, according to a release from U.S. Attorney Sally Quillian Yates office. The effects of “bath salts” have been described as being similar to those caused by other stimulants such as methamphetamine, MDMA (ecstasy), and cocaine.
This is not the first time Cherokee County stores, including one in Holly Springs, were subjected to seizure of synthetic marijuana.
The U.S. Attorney's Office said five types of synthetic marijuana are currently designated as controlled substances under federal law, while several others are listed administratively under Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act by DEA. Two types of “bath salts” are listed as controlled substances permanently, and one additional type is listed administratively under Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act by DEA.
According to the American Association of Poison Control Centers, in 2011 there were 6,138 calls regarding exposure to bath salts, and as of June 30, 2012, there have been 1,717 calls.
Investigating this case are the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (ICE HSI) with assistance from the Marietta-Cobb-Smyrna Narcotics Unit, the Roswell Police Department Special Investigations Unit, the Sandy Springs Police Department Special Investigations Unit, the Cherokee County Multi-agency Narcotics Squad and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.
It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Ellen V. Endrizzi and Michael Brown.