A Kingston man and a woman from Wayne County were arrested Friday after allegedly conspiring to distribute more than $100,000 in designer drugs commonly known as bath salts, prosecutors said.
Authorities arrested Kevin Hartrum, 55, and Teresa Greene, 52, and charged them with conspiracy to distribute schedule I controlled substance analogues, a federal charge that carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. The two were arraigned in White Plains federal court Friday afternoon.
Hartrum is the owner of a drug paraphernalia shop in Kingston and Greene is an employee who has worked at the store since at least late 2011, according to the U.S. attorney's office in the Southern District of New York.
From August 2012 through January of this year, a confidential informant and an undercover police officer purchased bath salts from both Hartrum and Greene, prosecutors said. Hartrum advised the informant and the undercover officer on how to use bath salts and "instructed them on how to profit from reselling the drugs to others," prosecutors said.
"Designer drugs have no medical or commercial use. The only thing they are good for is harming our communities, endangering our first responders and lining the pockets of adult drug dealers with ill-earned cash," DEA Special Agent-in-Charge Brian R. Crowell said in a statement.
The bath salts tested positive for pentedrone, a designer drug stimulant, as well as Pyrrolidinopentiophenone, a dopamine reuptake inhibitor, and 4-Methylethcathinone, which has qualities similar to amphetamines. All three compounds are commonly found in designer drugs, authorities said, and under federal law, they are all illegal substances.
The DEA worked with the Kingston Police Department during the investigation.
In addition to a potential 20-year prison sentence, Hartrum and Greene face a fine of up to $1 million and supervision for life.
Attempts Friday to reach attorneys for Hartrum and Greene were unsuccessful.