Butane gas lands Saudi men in jail, Saudi men arrested for inhaling butane, Saudi men arrested, Saudi arrests
Source: Medi 1 TV

A group of Saudi men inhaled butane gas for the fun of it without knowing the high price of a few good laughs would be jail.

According to Twasul news site, police busted the men as they were in possession of the substance. The group told investigators it made them "happy," and claimed they used it to make themselves laugh.

Authorities immediately arrested the defendants and referred the case to the country's public prosecution office.

On Sunday, the office issued a statement on the case in which officials confirmed legal action is being taken against the men.

"This kind of gas is considered addictive and when inhaled it affects a person's respiratory system, can cause severe poisoning and may also have an effect on one's behavior," the public prosecution's statement read. 

"Six tanks of the gas were found with the men, four of which had been used. Clothing items found in the area had traces of it on them. When the defendants were confronted about the issue, they said they were inhaling the gas because it made them laugh," it added. 

The public prosecution office said the gas is classified as an "addictive substance," which means the men will be tried under laws similar to those applied to cases involving the use of illegal drugs. 

Butane is used by young people in the kingdom for its "drug-like" effect

The gas is filled in tanks and used in home cooking appliances but is also often inhaled by young people in the kingdom because it has "drug-like" effects.

Cheap and accessible, the gas poses a great threat to communities when misused. Saudi medics have long warned about the serious effects of inhaling butane. Authorities have also cracked down on its use as a drug, especially after a young Saudi man died of butane poisoning in 2014

The man collapsed after he inhaled the gas because he wanted to get a helium-like effect on his voice while fooling around with friends.