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4,000 litres of ‘date rape’ drug ‘bute’ seized by Federal Police

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Authorities have found the 'date rape' drug, bute, concealed in packaging labelled as body oil, essential oil, and face masks.
date rape drug bute

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) and the Australian Border Force (ABF) have seized more than 4,200 litres of ‘date rape’ drug known as ‘bute’.

Bute, or 1,4-Butanediol has been found concealed in packaging labelled as body oil, essential oil, and face masks.

Further, a series of raids have led officials to thousands of litres of bute on shore. The drug is commonly associated with sexual assault.

The substance can be used as a substitute for GHB, an illegal drug. The AFP said bute is being “increasingly linked” to assaults and overdoses.

Background

Bute is an industrial chemical often used in plastic manufacturing. It can be imported legally for industrial purposes, but manufacturers must be registered through official channels.

It is also used illegally as a drug. Bute has depressive effects and can cause the body’s nervous system to slow down.

ABF Acting Commander Asha Patwardhan described it as a “dual-use substance,” because it has “legitimate industry use, but is also commonly used as an illicit substance.”

Bute siezed

In March, border officials in Sydney found more than 1,000 litres of the date rape drug, bute, hidden in body oil and essential oil bottles.

It came as the Government introduced harsher penalties for importing bute to Australia, including life imprisonment for some offenders.

Recent AFP searches in Sydney’s west also led to the seizure of a further 1,400 litres of bute.

National Alcohol and Other Drug Hotline: 1800 250 015

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