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Chemistry Fan Sentenced for Producing, Selling Drugs
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A 22-year-old chemistry fan was sentenced to four years in jail for working out the formula of ketamine and selling his home-made drugs to addicts.

The People's Court in Dongcheng District of Beijing announced the ruling on Tuesday.

Investigators said Jia Qin, formerly an intern at the laboratory of a Beijing-based hospital, produced more than 70 grams of ketamine between September and November last year, more than half of which was sold to druggers.

He was caught red-handed by Beijing police last November when he trying to sell 30 grams of the drug to an old client.

Jia was a chemistry fan at high school. Drawing inspirations from a film about a notorious drug kingpin, he was determined to use his talent in drug production.

At 17, Jia spent days in the school library and on the Internet trying to work out the formula of ketamine, and succeeded in two years.

Jia and his friend Jin Xin produced the drug, put up ads at several websites, and made more than 4,000 yuan (US$513) of illegal profits.

Jin, 22, was sentenced to one-year jail term, a lenient punishment because he only helped clean test tubes and watched temperature changes, a spokesman with the court said.

When asked why he had not used his talent in a decent job, Jia said he had not been able to find one. "I made many phone calls but was never given a job, probably because I had just a three-year college education and no bachelor's degree."

Ketamine, originally used as a tranquillizer in animals, is widely used as ecstasy.

(Xinhua News Agency September 19, 2007)

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