Cannabis is classified as a Class B drug, meaning that, whilst it is a harmful substance, it is not quite as harmful as drugs with a Class A classification. Cannabis is the most widely used illegal drug in the UK, and although the numbers of people using cannabis has decreased over the last few years, it still remains a common issue across the globe.
Cannabis classification in the UK
Cannabis has not always been a class B drug, from 2004 to 2009 it was downgraded to a class C drug – which are commonly seen as less harmful substances to the human body. The change happened in January 2004, after the harshness of Class C penalties for production and distribution was increased.
Why was cannabis reclassified as a Class C drug?
The main reason for the reclassification of cannabis is so that police time was freed to focus on ‘more serious’ crimes, such as those related to Class A substances. In the first year following the reclassification, arrests for cannabis possession fell by approximately one third. This in turn saved an estimated 199,000 hours of police time.
Why was cannabis returned to a Class B status?
Due to new scientific research which suggested that cannabis was more harmful to the human body than first thought, cannabis was reclassified as a Class B drug in January 2009.
Can I go to prison for cannabis possession?
If found guilty of possession of cannabis, you could be facing up to five years in prison, an unlimited fine or both. If you’re under the age of 18, you will be arrested and given a formal warning. If you’re found guilty of supplying or growing cannabis, the penalties are much harsher. You could be facing an unlimited fine and/or up to 14 years in prison.
If you’ve been accused of cannabis possession or production, it’s vital that you get professional legal advice. It might not seem like a big deal, but the Courts take cannabis-related crimes very seriously.
Here at DPP Law, we have a specialist team of drug solicitors on hand to fight your corner and we can ensure that we’ll have a confidential discussion about your case.
Featured Image Credit: Bonafide CollectivePosted on: Wed, 15 November 2017