Agents with the special operations division of the Kansas Bureau of Investigation (KBI), El Dorado Police Department, Lyon County Sheriff’s Office and the Kansas Department of Revenue have culminated a 7-month investigation into the sale of synthetic cannabinoids XR-11 and Ur-144 , (a.k.a. ‘potpourri’) with 10 search warrants on businesses and residences in Emporia and El Dorado.
The investigation began with undercover agents purchasing several types of potpourri, investigation of emergency room admissions of persons being admitted to the hospital after using the substances and financial records.
On August 6, law enforcement officers made controlled purchases from Blitzed Detox Shop in Emporia along with All Out Detox and Price Right Smoke Shop/JKL Liquor in El Dorado. Search warrants were then executed on all three businesses with further ‘potpourri’ products, drug paraphernalia and cash being seized.
Evidence found at those locations led to search warrants at the residences of the owners and other businesses in Emporia, Arkansas City and El Dorado including C&J Wholesale where what appears to be a packaging operation was seized, as well as an additional undercover purchase of a controlled substance at a retail location in Wichita.
At this point several pounds of synthetic cannabinoid treated potpourri, five cars, a boat, a motorcycle, tools, equipment and more than $100,000.00 in cash has been seized as evidence, proceeds and through drug tax stamp obligations.
Two subjects, Benjamin Huff of El Dorado and Jonathan Pope of Emporia have been arrested on one count each of Distribution of Controlled Substance, Possession of Controlled Substance and Drug Tax violation. Further arrests and seizures are expected.
All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.