PHILADELPHIA, USA – US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers in Philadelphia seized a combined six gallons of gamma-butyrolactone (GBL), an industrial chemical solvent and a precursor chemical to the dangerous gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB), last Saturday.
GBL is known on the streets as liquid ecstasy and “coma in a bottle.” The GBL arrived in liquid form in two separate shipments. Both shipments arrived from France and were destined to an address in Hillsborough County, Florida.
Inside each shipment was a single clear plastic jug filled with an opaque liquid. Officers used a handheld elemental isotope analysis tool and identified the liquid as GBL, a DEA Schedule 1 controlled substance.
According to the DEA, GBL is a chemical analogue of gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB), a highly addictive central nervous system depressant that poses potentially severe health consequences, including respiratory distress, coma, and death.
GHB is used by sexual predators as a date-rape drug, and by bodybuilders to increase growth hormone.
Used properly, GBL is an industrial solvent that strips paint and rust. No arrests have been made.
“Customs and Border Protection will continue to use our border security authority to search suspect international parcels and intercept dangerous products that could seriously harm American citizens. This is a mission and responsibility that we take very seriously,” said Rene Ortega, Acting Area Port Director for CBP’s Area Port of Philadelphia.
CBP officers and agents seized an average of 2,895 pounds of dangerous drugs every day at our nation’s air, land and sea ports of entry. See what else CBP accomplished during “A Typical Day” in 2022.
CBP’s border security mission is led at our nation’s Ports of Entry by CBP officers and agriculture specialists from the Office of Field Operations. CBP screens international travelers and cargo and searches for illicit narcotics, unreported currency, weapons, counterfeit consumer goods, prohibited agriculture, invasive weeds and pests, and other illicit products that could potentially harm the American public, US businesses, and our nation’s safety and economic vitality.