CANNABIS use is being ‘unofficially legalised’ according to campaigners after new figures show up to nine out of ten people caught with the drug are never charged.
In some areas just 12 per cent of people caught with the drug never go before a court and escape with punishments such as a warning or a caution.2
Across England, an average of just 22 per cent of possession offences led to a criminal charge last year, down from 27 per cent in 2017.
David Green, director of the think-tank Civitas, said: ‘These figures provide even stronger evidence that the police have unofficially legalised cannabis in many parts of the country.
“Many police leaders want to legalise cannabis. Some are openly in favour of changing the law, while others turn a blind eye.
Assistant Chief Constable Jason Harwin, the lead for drugs at the National Police Chiefs’ Council, said the law provides a “range of options for those in possession of the cannabis”.
Cannabis remains illegal to possess, grow, distribute, sell or grow in the UK.
Currently anyone found possessing cannabis can be sentenced to a maximum of five years in prison, an unlimited fine or both punishments under UK legislation.
Supplying or producing the class B drug can land people in prison for a maximum of 14 years an unlimited fine, or both. Police can issue a warning or on-the-spot fine if you’re caught with a small amount – generally less than one ounce – if it is deemed for personal use.
On November 1, 2018, medical cannabis became available to patients in the UK on NHS prescription.
If you require advice and representation in respect of this area of criminal law, or any area of criminal, then contact our office today on 01273 823456 to speak with one of our specialist solicitors.