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Just a little of the tasteless and odorless “date rape drug” gamma hydroxybutyric acid slipped into a drink can cause drowsiness, unconsciousness, and also amnesia, so it’s scary to think of someone receiving gallons of the stuff in the mail. But that’s what a Metropolitan Police Department source says happened in the area of the Georgetown University campus on April 25.

The source, speaking on condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to talk publicly about the case, says that’s the day cops intercepted a package containing about 8 gallons of GHB addressed to a former Georgetown student who once lived near campus. The student graduated a year ago, according to the source. The graduate insists to police he knows nothing about the package, the source says. Police haven’t arrested him. Cops watched the package for awhile, but no one ever came for it.

The source says dealers often send drug shipments to addresses that don’t belong to them: “They track it online and they know when it’s going to arrive.” Once the package is delivered they scoop it up before anyone catches on. But what’s odd about the GU case is that the dealers “usually use fictitious names.”

GHB, which has a legal use as a prescribed sleep-aid, can be made by amateur chemists. Though it has a reputation as a “predatory drug”, it’s also used recreationally, traditionally by clubbers. The Drug Enforcement Agency says liquid GHB “sells for $5 to $25 per cap.” Though that’s a vague quantity, eight gallons of GHB would obviously turn a tidy profit.

Georgetown University spokesperson Rob Mathis emails that campus officials have “no knowledge of the incident.” A call to the director of the university’s Department of Public Safety wasn’t returned. We’ve put in a request to MPD command for more information.

This wouldn’t be the first time Georgetown has had a run-in with illicit chemicals, though. In October, two students (one from Georgetown and one from the University of Richmond) were arrested for manufacturing the hallucinogen DMT in a dorm room. The two freshmen admitted to concocting the drug, but told a judge that it was just an experiment and that they had no intention of  becoming traffickers. They were given probation.

Mathis says the “use, production and transfer/distribution of illegal drugs are issues we take very seriously. University policy strictly forbids the possession, use, transfer and/or sale of illegal drugs, which are violations of the student code of conduct, as well as local and federal laws.”

Photo by Kyle Rush via Flickr/Creative Commons Attribution License 2.0