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A reader contacted me recently asking about an email she received describing an incident at a Katy Gas station where a woman was given a drug-soaked business card by a stranger.  According to the email, the woman took the card from the man (who was posing as a painter) and she was followed. Apparently, this email has been circulating not only around the Katy area, but around the entire nation since early this summer.


Here is a copy of the chain email (in one form):

In Katy, Tx a man came over and offered his services as a painter to a female putting gas in her car and left his card. She said no , but accepted his card out of kindness and got in the car. The man then got into a car driven by another gentleman. As the lady left the service station and saw the men following her out of the station at the same time. Almost immediately, she started to feel dizzy and could not catch her breath. She tried to open the window and realized that the odor was on her hand; the same hand which accepted the card from the gentleman at the gas station.

She drove into the first driveway and began to honk her horn to ask for help.

She then noticed the men were immediately behind her and she felt she needed to do something at that moment. She drove into the first driveway and began to honk her horn to ask for help. The men drove away but the lady still felt pretty bad for several minutes after she could finally catch her breath. Apparently there was a substance on the card and could have seriously injured her. The drug is called ‘BURUNDANGA’ and it is used by people who wish to incapacitate a victim in order to steal or take advantage of them.

So take heed and make sure you don’t accept cards at any given time alone or from someone on the streets. This applies to those making house calls and slipping you a card when they offer their services.

After searching for details on this story, I discovered that this was not a new development and has been debunked by a number of “rumor-killing” sites such as Snopes.com, TruthorFiction.com, and About.com’s UrbanLegends sites.  This email rumor, like so many others, is most likely a hoax.  This one just happens to be set in Katy.

Is the burundanga story bunk?

We have not found any substantiation of this story, which has none of the kinds of details or facts that would lead to verification.

Burundanga is a real drug that is well known in Colombia and a source if widespread concern.  Criminals in Colombia have been known to put the drug into food, gum, or drinks of people who, it is said, can go into a trance-like state in which they appear to be conscious but are powerless to resist orders.  Victims have been known to make bank withdrawals, participate in handing clothing, furniture, and other valuables over to thieves just because they were told to do it.

According to the sources we checked, however, Burundanga is described as being odorless and tasteless so would not have produced the strong odor described in the eRumor.

Burundanga is described as being odorless and tasteless so would not have produced the strong odor described in the email.

We also didn’t find any incidents in which anyone has passed the drug to another person  through simple touch, such as on a business card.

The victim allegedly received a dose of the drug by simply touching a business card. (All sources agree that burundanga must be inhaled or ingested, or the subject must have prolonged topical contact with a high dosage of the substance, in order for it to have an effect.) The victim also allegedly detected a “strong odor” emitted by the drug-laced card. (All sources agree that burundanga is odorless and tasteless.)

Have you gotten this mysterious (yet bunk) email?  Please let us know by leaving a comment below…

  • Christina

    I got this e-mail from a co-worker of mine today. What is going on? Do people just sit around and make stories up and pick on some town where they probably know nothing about ? To a girl that came from a tiny town where if a baby was born, everyone knew within an hour every detail of the birth to a big city where you hear about things that make blush just reading about it. I hate the fact that there people putting bad stories about places they know nothing of. Sorry just had to vent.

  • Andre

    Hallo There
    The email has been in circulation in South Africa for some time now with only one deviation. The stranger has been replaced with a man (with a nigerian accent).
    Regards 

  • alice

    i got the email

  • Janetormerod

    my friend posted it as  a warning about it on my wall

  • Barb

    I received this email today and decided to check out the drug, bringing me to this page. After reading the information on here it seems there’s no need to forward to my friends or family. 

  • Laura

    I received it today from a friend in France and like Barb above will not be forwarding!

  • Iain Reid1

    Hi, I also received this email today from a friend whereby the notice reads Police Report—Very Important.

    so judging by the above it is again a ‘spam’ email and I shall not be forwarding it either.

    Iain

  • Baz

    Where can I get this Burudanga. I often give prospects my business card. It would be great to see them go into a trance after handling the card. This would be great. I could put a pen in their hands and guide them towards signing orders. My boss would welcome increasing business levels.

  • http://www.notjustthekitchen.com/ Rita

    Just received the e-mail but after research found myself here. Glad I didn’t forward it to anyone.

  • Ive

    I too received the email today. After reading your blog, I am comfortable to say I won’t be alarming anyone else. I am in the state of Mass. and email reads, “from police dept. urgent alert!”…..

  • Marjanvdb

    I got this emai today!!! the 25th op April 2012. Good stories last long… :-)

  • Marygoldokiyi

    JUST GOT THIS TODAY, DECIDED TO CHECK IT OUT, GLAD I DID. NO FORWARDING BUT GUESS I COULD FORWARD THIS WEBPAGE TO MY CONTACTS SO THEY CAN READ ABOUT THIS DRUG..THANK YOU FOR THE INSIGHT

  • Robyn Frailey

    I just received the very same one.

  • http://Facebook Diana Newman

    I received an e-mail today 14th May from a friend of mine stating that it had come from the policeas a warning. My first thought was that it was a hoax and I looked up ‘Berundanga’ on the internet…..to find that it is a beautiful looking plant. If a card with this so called dangerous chemical on it incapacitates the victim, why does it not affect the ‘giver’?

  • Pbault13

    well yeah i forwarded it already and what a mistake that was

  • Silvershard

    It’s back.  Being naturally cynical I assume that these emails are urban legends and am just about to forward a link to this site to the person who sent it to me.

  • Dave

    I just got the South african version. Police / Tracker  letterhead to boot. I took the effort of googling it, THEN sent it back to everyone on the list telling them to check before they perpetuate urban legends

  • Dave

    I just got the South african version. Police / Tracker  letterhead to boot. I took the effort of googling it, THEN sent it back to everyone on the list telling them to check before they perpetuate urban legends

  • Cappi1370

    Well, unfortunately, I did send a message to all of my friends and family to warn them about the drug. I got an e-mail back from an aunt of mine telling me that she had found the information to be false. I am so that that she let me know and I further investigated the story. Upon further investigation, I also found the story to be Bogus. I really do wish that I knew why people do stuff like that.

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