Students ill from synthetic cannabis

Last updated 05:00 27/07/2013

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A Kapiti College pupil has been expelled after two 14-year-old girls who took synthetic cannabis were found lying semi-conscious near the school.

The two year 10 girls were found by the college guidance counsellor on July 4. When he managed to rouse them, one was violently ill, acting principal Andy Pook said.

"Who knows what would have happened if the counsellor had not come across them by chance . . . they would not have been in full view of anybody."

Two 16-year-old boys were with the girls, as was an amount of synthetic cannabis, labelled Everest, which the boys appeared to have taken with no ill-effects.

One of the boys, who said he got the drug from a skateboard park, has been expelled.

The other pupils have had to do jobs around the school during the holidays, and have been referred to drug counselling.

They have also written warnings to their fellow pupils in a newsletter circulated on the last day of term, on July 12. "They did not pull any punches about being really sick," Mr Pook said. "We wanted the whole school community to know these things are really bad. They may be legal, but this was quite a shock . . . for the parents as well."

One of the boys said he was so worried one of the girls would swallow her tongue or vomit that he put her in the recovery position.

One of the girls said she could not control parts of her body. "It was not a good experience," she wrote.

The Psychoactive Substances Act, which came into force on July 18, bans the sale of psychoactive products from diaries, convenience stores, grocery stores, supermarkets, service stations and liquor outlets. No-one under 18 is allowed to buy them. KAY BLUNDELL

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