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Press Release

Fugitive Sentenced In Absentia To More Than Eight Years For Dealing In Synthetic Cannabinoids

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Florida

Orlando, FL – U.S. District Judge Paul G. Byron today sentenced Imad Rawhi Al-Qattawi (47, Ramallah, Palestine) in absentia to eight years and one month in federal prison for distributing and possessing with the intent to distribute UR-144, a synthetic cannabinoid.  Synthetic cannabinoids are a group of drugs that are often marketed by such names as “K2” and “Spice.”  Al-Qattawi pleaded guilty on October 29, 2015, but later failed to appear at his sentencing hearing on January 13, 2016.

According to court documents, Al-Qattawi was a manufacturer and dealer of “Bizarro,” a brand of synthetic cannabinoid containing UR-144.  During the investigation, agents purchased more thanb 5 kilograms of “Bizarro” from Al-Qattawi over a series of transactions.  When Al-Qattawi was arrested, agents found over 5 additional kilograms of “Bizarro” in his van belonging.

This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Vincent S. Chiu.

Updated October 3, 2016

Drug Trafficking