A 31-year-old man was arrested and 137 cylinders of nitrous oxide were seized in New Taipei City, following an investigation into laughing gas being sold under the brand, “Jesus Balloon Shop.”
The New Taipei City Police Criminal Investigation Corps began an investigation after finding an internet user advertising flavored laughing gas on social media sites at a price of NT$4,500 per bottle. Flavors advertised included cola, sarsaparilla grape, mango, and honeydew melon.
Police investigators traced the posts to a man named Hsiao. On the evening of February 15, police and personnel from the New Taipei City Environmental Protection Bureau raided a house in Xizhi District, seized evidence, and arrested Mr Hsiao.
Hsiao was interrogated and sent to the District Prosecutor to be charged on suspicion of violating the Toxic Chemical Substances Control Act. The maximum penalty for the offence is NT$300,000.
The New Taipei City Criminal Investigation Corps pointed out that in recent years, laughing gas has been packaged as a party booster by criminals. Police warned that because laughing gas is colorless and odorless at room temperature, it is easy for people to accidentally overdose. In severe cases, it can cause breathing difficulties, chest tightness, auditory hallucinations, Symptoms such as fainting, and can even lead to shock or death.
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