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William J. Ihlenfeld, II

1125 Chapline Street, Federal Building, Suite 3000 ● Wheeling, WV 26003
(304) 234-0100 ● Contact: Chris Zumpetta-Parr, Public Affairs Specialist

July 26, 2012

“Bath Salts” Conviction a First in
West Virginia Federal Court

WHEELING, WEST VIRGINIA - The first federal conviction in West Virginia for the distribution of the synthetic drug known as “Bath Salts” occurred yesterday in Wheeling. STEVEN KLOH, 35 years old and from Columbus, Ohio, entered a plea of guilty in federal court for his involvement in the distribution of the substance.

According to U.S. Attorney William Ihlenfeld, KLOH entered the plea before Judge Frederick P. Stamp, Jr. to “Aiding and Abetting the Interstate Travel in Aid of a Racketeering Enterprise” for his role in bringing the synthetic substances from Columbus to rural Tyler County, West Virginia, last September for resale. The substances in this case contained the chemicals Methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV) and N-methyl-N-ethylcathione (4-MEC).

“Bath Salts”, which is how they are referred to among users and dealers, are synthetic chemical compounds created to simulate other controlled substances such as methamphetamine and ecstasy, and mimic their psychological and hallucinogenic effects. The substances are addictive and are often sold at gas stations, convenience stores, and over the internet.

“This is the first federal conviction in West Virginia for a ‘Bath Salts’ dealer but unfortunately it won’t be the last, as synthetic drugs have become a major problem,” said Ihlenfeld. “We have several pending cases involving the same type of conduct and many others under investigation.”

KLOH, who is in custody pending sentencing, faces up to five years imprisoment and a fine of up to $250,000.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney John C. Parr and was investigated by the Tyler County Sheriff’s Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration.

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