VOLUSIA COUNTY, Fla. - There was a major drug bust in Volusia County Thursday. Officials said 14 people were arrested.
The ringleader was 55-year-old Loraine Kennelly, co-owner of marketing firm Lad Enterprises LLC in New Smyrna Beach, officers said.
Authorities said the business could be at the center of a large narcotics operation, possibly tied to "bath salts," involving the Volusia Bureau of Investigation, local police agencies, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and possibly the FBI.
Investigators believe the suspects were buying and selling synthetic drugs all over the country.
Boxes full of large bags of K2 synthetic cannabis and "bath salts" sat taped up as evidence at a press conference Thursday, held by Volusia County Sheriff Ben Johnson and Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi.
"They're lethal to our children. Our children (are) taking these and shame on the businesses that are selling this junk to our kids," Bondi said.
Investigators said many of the drugs mimic LSD and cocaine.
Lad Enterprises LLC in New Smyrna Beach is just one company that was importing them from China and Canada, investigators said.
It was also allegedly manufacturing, marketing and distributing the drugs around the United States.
Lad Enterprises LLC's website advertises products such as hangover recovery shots and an aerosol-type of energy shot.
The employee who was arrested did not want to talk to WFTV.
"Let's hope that the people out there seeing this realize, we're coming after you," Johnson said.
Agents seized 6,700 grams of synthetic drugs. The businesses sell it in all shapes and sizes, which officials said is part of the challenge of keeping it off the streets.
"They're changing these chemicals up so fast, that without the Florida Department of Law Enforcement diligent hard work, we would not be able to test these fast enough," Bondi said.
Officials said there may be more arrests to come.