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RALEIGH, NC (AP) — The North Carolina Senate has unanimously approved a bill to outlaw small packets of herbal incense that pack the mind-altering effects of marijuana, but also carry health risks.

The Senate voted 50-0 on Thursday to ban the synthetic compounds sold in gas stations, convenience stores and head shops under names including “Spice” and “K2.”

The products mix herbs and spices that are then sprayed with a chemical compound similar to the psychoactive ingredient in
marijuana. It is smoked from pipes or after rolling it in paper.

The packets of synthetic marijuana sold in stores are usually less than half an ounce, and possession of that amount wouldn’t be punished. Possession of more than a half-ounce would become a misdemeanor.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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