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Forensic Sci Int. 2010 Apr 15;197(1-3):59-66. doi: 10.1016/j.forsciint.2009.12.048. Epub 2010 Jan 13.

Chemical analysis of four capsules containing the controlled substance analogues 4-methylmethcathinone, 2-fluoromethamphetamine, alpha-phthalimidopropiophenone and N-ethylcathinone.

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  • 1Forensic Science SA, Adelaide, Australia.


In August 2007, four capsules containing white powders, said to have originated from an Israel-based Internet company "Neorganics", were anonymously delivered to the Royal Adelaide Hospital, South Australia. The capsules were analysed and the active components were identified including 4-methylmethcathinone, 2-fluoromethamphetamine, alpha-phthalimidopropiophenone and N-ethylcathinone, all of which were unlisted within South Australian controlled substance regulations. We examined the relevant scientific literature surrounding these chemicals and present both GCMS and NMR data for 4-methylmethcathinone and alpha-phthalimidopropiophenone, which have previously received little attention. We also present the vapour- and condensed-phase infrared spectra (IR) of 4-methylmethcathinone as these have also not been reported in the literature previously. We discuss the issues surrounding whether these chemicals can be classified as controlled substance analogues and the likely impact this could have on prosecutions of individuals distributing these products.

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