It looks like “spice,” the legal, marijuana-like substance that has sparked controversy across the nation, is making inroads in Los Angeles. The UCLA Daily Bruin reports that the product, sold under names such as K2 and Black Mamba, is available in Westwood Village and that, so far, the local office of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (which is within walking distance of campus) hasn't been able to do much about it.

After authorities tested samples from around the country, the DEA found that ” … chemically, none of them are falling within any sort of federal legal guidelines for being controlled,” special agent Sarah Pullen told the Bruin.

People who say they've tried spice report a high-like response, with a faster heart rate and some disorientation. One user said it was like “a bad acid trip.”

It's been banned by the U.S. Marine Corps, six states, and several counties. But so far the federal government has not designated it as an outlaw drug. The substance is often sold as a not-for-human-ingestion product; rather, it's marketed as incense.

According to the Wikipedia entry for “spice,” the drug is laced with cannabinoids , so weed-like effects wouldn't be surprising.

LA Weekly