After a NewsChannel 3 investigation exposed a loophole in Virginia’s synthetic marijuana ban that allowed newer versions of it to legally be sold in stores, Governor Terry McAuliffe signed off on changes to the law that will begin July 1.
The changes expand the list of banned chemicals compounds associated with spice, and it makes it easier and faster for the state to ban new versions that spice makers create. While the process once took years, it can now take a matter of weeks.
Before the changes, spice makers skirted the law by creating new chemical compounds that weren’t specifically listed in the law.
The new law also increases the penalty for those who make, sell or intend to sell synthetic marijuana. Previously, the sentence range was from one to 5 years, but the new law makes it one to 10 years.