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NH store owner is charged with selling synthetic pot

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — A Pelham store owner has been arrested for selling a synthetic marijuana linked to a spate of overdoses in New Hampshire.

WMUR-TV reports 43-year-old Christopher Matte of Hudson, owner of Ace Discount Cigarettes, was arrested Friday on two counts of felony drug sales. Three other stores in Manchester have been closed after selling the drug known as ‘‘spice.’’

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Gov. Maggie Hassan declared a state of emergency Friday to allow public health officials to investigate and quarantine the drugs linked to more than 40 overdoses in Manchester and Concord.

Police are working to quarantine the bubblegum flavor of a product named ‘‘Smacked!’’ Such products are labeled as ‘‘herbal incense’’ but are known to be smoked or brewed.

It was not immediately known if Matte is being represented by a lawyer.

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