Two men who ran so-called “legal high” shops are facing jail after they admitted endangering the lives of their customers by selling them potentially lethal substances that were “not fit for human consumption”.
Liston Pacitti and Paul Brocklehurst sold a massive range of so-called “New Psychoactive Substances” (NPS) from stores in Montrose, Arbroath and Perth – including the controversial synthetic cannabis drug Spice.
The pair’s products left multiple customers – including a 13-year-old boy sold substances by Brocklehurst at his Perth shop – hospitalised.
Both men were repeatedly warned to stop by police but carried on regardless.
Brocklehurst even featured in a BBC documentary, The Deadly World of Legal Highs, in which he sold an undercover producer Spice, which can be 100 times more potent than cannabis.
The brand is known to have caused kidney failure and strokes and has been linked to many deaths around the world.
During the secret filming, This N That owner Paul Brocklehurst said: “Spice is 1.5 grams for a tenner, which is excellent value for money.
“We just got it in today. Come and give us your feedback.”
The BBC journalist made it clear he intended to consume the chemical. At this point Brocklehurst should have stopped the sale. Instead, his colleague winked three times and said: “It’s not for human consumption, buddy.”
The man then turned and said to Brocklehurst: “It’s all right. He’s seen my three winks.”
The two men admitted selling a litany of substances that prosecutors said were potentially lethal.
As well as Spice they sold substances known as “Happy Joker”, “Rapture”, “Exodus Damnation”, “Sky High”, “White Columbian”, “Pink Panther”, “Ching”, “Blue Cheese” and “Charly Sheen”.
The pair also sold bongs, hoses, grinders, pipes, cutting tools, lighters, smoking papers, rolling mats and scales “for the purpose of providing a means of ingesting and consuming” the substances.
In total eight people were “injured” by the substances – one from Pacitti’s shop and seven from Brocklehurst’s.
It is understood that all eight had to be admitted to hospital for treatment with some kept in the High Dependency Unit for critical illnesses caused by the drugs.
Both men admitted that by supplying the NPS substances they caused “danger of injury and danger to life”.
Brocklehurst admitted selling substances to two boys, one aged 15 and the other only 13 at his store.
The 13-year-old boy was one of those admitted to hospital as a result of ingesting the substances.
Brocklehurst, 62, of Gwynedd, Wales, and Pacitti, 28, of Aberdeen, both pleaded guilty on indictment to charges of culpably and recklessly supplying new psychoactive substances to the danger of health and life.
Brocklehurst’s offences were committed at his shop, This ‘N That, in County Place, Perth. Pacitti’s were committed at his stores, Declaration and Evape-O-Lution in Brothock Bridge, Arbroath and The High Life and Evape-o-Lution in High Street, Montrose.
Sheriff Lorna Drummond QC deferred sentence until next month for the Crown to prepare full written narratives detailing both mens’ offences.
The pair were released on bail.