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Smoke shop asking for return of glass pipes

Last Modified: Friday, July 11, 2014 2:05 PM

By Johnathan Manning / American Press

The owner of a local smoke shop is asking for the return of 12,000 glass smoking pipes taken during a raid of his store.

A motion was filed in state district court on behalf of Yossi Galamidi, 35, owner of Blaze Smoke Shop. Blaze was one of two smoke shops raided in May as part of an investigation into synthetic urine being sold.

Authorities began looking into smoke shops after receiving complaints about products being sold at Up in Smoke, a Moss Bluff store, said Calcasieu Parish Sheriff Tony Mancuso. Synthetic urine was being sold to pass work drug tests, he said.

Galamidi was arrested for selling a product to falsify a drug screen, possession of drug paraphernalia and illegal use of currency.

A total of 12,113 glass pipes were seized, as were brownie mixes, digital scales, metal and glass accessories, mouth cleanser, hair follicle cleanser and other items, according to a motion filed by attorney Glen Vamvoras.

“The pipes are legal to possess and sell and should not have been confiscated as contraband,” the motion reads.

When the motion will be heard and which judge will hear it has yet to be determined, though, because charges have not yet been filed.

A search warrant said that from February to May, an undercover agent made seven purchases at Blaze, according to the motion. The detective bought synthetic urine; a smoking pipe, or bong; a prosthetic urinating device; and a detox herbal supplement.

“On all accounts, based on affidavits from (a detective), smoking devices sold in the store were not concealed, and were openly on display in the store,” the motion reads.

“Some were hanging from the ceiling of the store on display. There were signs informing the customers that the products were not being sold for use in criminal activity.”

Mancuso said in May that the Sheriff’s Office worked closely with the District Attorney’s Office because “they do have certain smoking devices that are legal, and of course some are illegal.”

Posted By: John On: 7/21/2014

Title: Tax dollars at waste.

I do not use drugs or marijuana. However it is a complete waste of time and tax dollars for the Sheriff's department to try to stop people from smoking marijuana or keep them from obtaining smoking devices. If I wated to try to pass a drug test buying items like these from a retailer will not stop me from achieving my goal of falsifying a drug screening. Perhaps this great state and its parishes should shift focus and our tax dollars on the obscene amount of drunk drivers that are on louisiana roads every day causing deadly accidents while intoxicated on the "legal" substance ALCOHOL.

Posted By: Keith On: 7/14/2014

Title: 12,000 pipes a serious problem

The bigger concern here is that if just one shop in the parish has 12,000 glass pipes, then you get an idea on just how many drug heads we have running around here. Think how much crime this creates related to drugs. Legalize drugs or this junk. We would have to be crazy. My thanks to the Da & sherriffs office. Get this "legal" stuff off the streets. We do not need to make it easier to do drugs.

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