https://www.johnonions.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/illegal-drugs.jpg 802 1200 Charlotte DeRosnay https://johnonions.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/11/John-Onions-logo-cropped-300x116.png Charlotte DeRosnay2019-11-28 14:08:332019-11-28 14:13:09Drugs Offences - Know the Law
Drugs Offences – Know the Law
In the UK the majority of offences relating to drugs are contained in the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971
The most common offences we see in Court are possession of a controlled drug, possession with intent to supply, the unlawful supply (give/sell/share) of a controlled drug and allowing premises to be used for the use of drugs, but there are many offences relating to drugs – too many to cover in one page.
The offences mentioned are either way offences meaning they can be heard in the Magistrates Court or the Crown Court.
The principle behind the legal restrictions placed on such substances is to control the use and distribution of potential harmful drugs.
In the UK, illegal drugs are placed into three different categories:
Crack cocaine, cocaine, ecstasy (MDMA), heroin, LSD, methadone, magic mushrooms, crystal meth
Amphetamines, barbiturates, cannabis, codeine, methylphenidate (Ritalin), synthetic cannabinoids, synthetic cathinones (e.g. mephedrone, methoxetamine), ketamine
Anabolic steroids, benzodiazepines (diazepam), gamma hydroxybutyrate (GHB), gamma-butyrolactone (GBL), piperazines (BZP), khat
For possessing illegal drugs the penalties are:
- Class A: up to 7 years in prison, an unlimited fine or both
- Class B: up to 5 years in prison, an unlimited fine or both
- Class C: up to 2 years in prison, an unlimited fine or both
For producing or supplying illegal drugs the penalties are:
- Class A: up to life in prison, an unlimited fine or both
- Class B: up to 14 years in prison, an unlimited fine or both
- Class C: up to 14 years in prison, an unlimited fine or both
There are a range of penalties a Court would look at, depending on the offence circumstances, mitigation and history.
There are defences contained in s28 Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 in relation to offences of possession, possession with intent, production and supply (as well as other offences not covered here):
- He neither knew, suspected, nor had reason to suspect the existence of some fact that the prosecution is required to prove, for example that he was in possession of the drug.
- He neither believed, suspected, nor had reason to suspect that the substance in question was a controlled drug.
- That he believed the product to be a controlled drug, which had it been that drug, would mean that he would not have been an offence at the time that he committed it.
Drugs offences are taken very seriously, and it is crucial you take advice if you find yourself facing prosecution. For more information or to discuss your case contact us here or call us on 01926 886 007.