Police Bust Grocery Store For Selling Spice

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Alabama's new all-encompassing spice ban may still be just a few days old, but authorities aren't wasting any time on a crackdown.

Officers from the Huntsville Police Department and Madison County STAC Unit raided Moody's Grocery Store on Monday afternoon after an undercover agent allegedly bought twenty dollars worth of synthetic drugs, better known as "spice."

The drugs were officially outlawed last week, but authorities say Moody's continued to sell them anyway. The store is located at 300 Oakwood Avenue in Huntsville.

Hamaed Albna (Photo: Huntsville Police Dept.)

Police arrested Hamaed Albna, the store's owner.  He is 43 years old.  Albna is charged with trafficking in a controlled substance.  Albna's bond was set at $30,000.

Investigators piled up the plunder, estimated to be more than 1,000 grams.

"It is clearly a problem," said STAC Unit spokesman Sgt. Dewayne McCarver. "My message is you better stop, now, immediately. There's no way around it."

A leniency period for business owners who sell spice officially ended when the law took effect, but officers said those who come forward and voluntarily surrender their leftovers would be spared prosecution.

Dr. Harry Hobbs, spokesperson for the Huntsville Police Department, said another business owner saw news reports on Monday's spice raid and called police to surrender spice products from his store shelves.  Police removed the illegal items and did not arrest the business owner.