Head shop to pay $22K in penalties

Bryan Cohen Aug. 30, 2012, 12:00pm


BUFFALO, N.Y. (Legal Newsline) - New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced a consent order and judgment on Wednesday against a Buffalo head shop requiring that it remove mislabeled or unlabeled products from its shelves.

Under the terms of the consent order and judgment signed by Erie County Supreme Court Judge Frederick J. Marshall, the Buffalo and Commack-based Pavilion International must remove the products, including intoxicants such as synthetic drugs or street drug alternatives, from its shelves. In addition, Pamo B. Nanwandi, the owner of the shop, must pay $22,000 in penalties.

"The proliferation of synthetic drugs has become a crisis in Erie County, New York State and across the country," Schneiderman said. "The judge's order proves that, by taking a creative approach in using the state's existing labeling laws, we can get swift results to remove dangerous synthetic drugs off store shelves and hold sellers accountable for breaking the law."

Agents from Schneiderman's office visited two Pavilion International stores and purchased items such as Kratom, Salvia and nitrous oxide canisters. The agents visited shops throughout the state and found that head shop retailers sold designer drugs, including bath salts and synthetic marijuana. The shops also allegedly promoted the drugs and provided tutorials on how to use them.

Under the labeling law in the state of New York, consumer commodity packaging must contain the name and place of business of the distributor, packer or manufacturer, as well as the net quantity of servings, the common product name, the net quantity of contents, uses or applications of the product and appropriate directions and warnings for customary use.

On July 10, Schneiderman filed 12 lawsuits against 16 head shops in New York state. His office received temporary restraining orders from all 12 judges within 36 hours of the filing. The restraining orders effectively removed the mislabeled products from the stores' shelves.

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