Date Rape Drug

Customs and Border Protection officers seized more than 13 pounds of gamma-butyrolactone (GBL) at Washington Dulles International Airport on March 2.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers on Monday seized five large bottles of gamma-butyrolactone (GBL) that arrived at Washington Dulles International Airport in international mail from China.

The DEA says GBL is known as a precursor of date rape drug gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB).

According to the National Institutes of Health, GHB, also known as 'liquid ecstasy', has recently become associated with drug-facilitated sexual assaults, known colloquially as 'date rape', due to the ability of the drug to cause loss of consciousness. The drug is commonly found 'spiked' into alcoholic beverages, as alcohol increases its sedative effects. 

Within the human body, GBL, which was confiscated at Dulles Airport, is rapidly converted into GHB and its effects are identical.

The confiscated GBL was bound for an address in Los Angeles, according to authorities.

According to CBP, officers inspected an express parcel and discovered five white, unlabeled, plastic bottles. Officers tested and confirmed the contents of the bottles as GBL. The combined weight of the GBL and plastic bottles was 6.05 kilograms, or about 13 pounds, 5 ounces.

GBL is a DEA Schedule 1 controlled substance in the U.S., meaning it has a high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use in treatment in the U.S.

“This seizure is a perfect example of how Customs and Border Protection officers rely on extraordinary experience and keen intuition to intercept a mismanifested and dangerous substance that could potentially harm American citizens,” Anne Maricich, CBP’s acting director of field operations in Baltimore, said in a prepared statement. “CBP’s border security mission is vital to helping keep our nation and our citizens safe and secure every day.”

The GBL will be destroyed, according to CBP.

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