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Navy Discharging 28 Sailors Over Alleged Synthetic Marijuana Drug Use

11/22/2011 01:15 PM ET

Navy Discharging 28 Sailors - The Navy is discharging 28 sailors over illegal synthetic marijuana drug use. The warfare service branch made a disturbing announcement on Monday. They were assigned to the aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan for using a synthetic drug called Spice that mimics marijuana. The announcement comes only a month after a similar investigation that led to the dismissal of 64 others — also from the San Diego-based U.S. Third Fleet, which includes the Reagan.

Some of the 64 were assigned to the Carl Vinson, the carrier from which Osama bin Laden was buried at sea. These 28 people were part of six probes conducted by the Navy in the past month.

The drug is a mixture of herbs and chemicals that mimic the active ingredient in marijuana but with side effects that can include headaches, seizures, numbness or paralysis.

The naval warfare service branch has spent the past year and a half battling the spread of the new designer drug, which at first was legal and couldn’t be detected by commonly used drug tests.

Recently, the military announced it had the ability to test for a limited number of these substances.

They will continue discharging those who are caught using this substance.

Spice first appeared in Europe before being introduced in the United States. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration named it as a controlled substance on March 1 in an emergency action, therefore making it illegal for over-the-counter sales.

The Navy has banned the use of fake pot and officials have been aggressively investigating its use among sailors.

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