Ellington’s bill banning two deadly drugs could soon be law

Posted by: Brenda Holmes and Allison Vanatsky  | Monday, March 20, 2017

STATEHOUSE (March 20, 2017) – In an effort to fight the drug epidemic in Indiana, lawmakers passed State Rep. Jeff Ellington’s (R-Bloomington) bill that would add two drugs to the controlled substance list on to the governor. 

“These two drugs are extremely dangerous substances that need to be added to the list, making it illegal to purchase or distribute,” Ellington said. “Once this bill is signed into law, it will make it a Level 5 felony if a person knowingly or intentionally deals or traffics U-47700 or Etizolam.”

This bill would add U-47700 and Etizolam to the controlled substance list. According to Ellington, U-47700 is typically produced in unregulated labs in China or Eastern Europe. The most common street or slang term for the drug is “Pink.” This synthetic opioid is easily accessible and affordable, costing roughly $40 online. It has not been evaluated or approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and does not have any legitimate medical applications.

Ellington said there have been more than 50 deaths nationwide and two in Bloomington linked to U-47700 use. The drug was banned through a unanimous vote by the Indiana Board of Pharmacy in 2016, but the ban will expire in June.

Etizolam is a sedative that can be potentially dangerous or life-threatening for individuals using it for extended periods of time. According to Ellington, the substance is currently a prescription medication in Japan, India and Italy but has recently emerged on the illicit drug market in Europe and the United States. Etizolam is usually in powder or tablet form. It has also been found painted onto small squares of paper that can be licked or swallowed.

The bill has been passed by both chambers and is on its way to the governor’s desk. For more information on Ellington’s bill, visit iga.in.gov.

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State Rep. Jeff Ellington represents House District 62, which includes

portions of Greene, Monroe, Martin and Daviess counties.

 

A high-resolution photo of Ellington can be downloaded by clicking here.