Illegal Substances

Health
European Court of Justices classifies CBD as non-addictive substance
European Court of Justices classifies CBD as non-addictive substance
Credit: unsplash.com / Elsa Olofsson

The European Court of Justice in its current decision stated that CBD not an addictive drug in the sense of the UN Single Convention. The court argued with the current state of science that CBD has no harmful effects on human health (ECJ C-663/18 of 19.11.2020).

This decision is contrary stance of the EU Commission which argued that CBD is an addictive drug.

Health
Thailand decriminalizes 102 substances for medical use and research including cocaine and opium
Thailand decriminalizes 102 substances for medical use and research including cocaine and opium
Credit: unsplash.com / Markus Spiske

According to a proclamation in Thailand's new Royal Gazette, the sale and possession of 102 substances classified as Category 2 drugs by the 1979 Narcotics Act may be sold or used under very specific limitations. Possession and use will be granted to governmental organizations, approved pharmacies, and health workers such as pharmacists, dentists, and veterinarians for the purposes of producing approved medical formulas or approved research.

The regulatory shift is similar to that made in the wake of December 2018 legislation that cleared the way for medical marijuana. Included in the new regulation, which will come into effect in July 2021, are opium, fentanyl, codeine, cocaine, and other substances.

Regional News • Americas • United States
Recreational marijuana legalized in four more states in the US
Recreational marijuana legalized in four more states in the US
Credit: unsplash.com / Wesley Gibbs

Arizona, New Jersey, South Dakota and Montana all passed legislation Tuesday permitting the possession of marijuana by adults, which means 15 states have legalized recreational weed or voted to legalize it.

Health
Psilocybin therapy legalized in Oregon
Psilocybin therapy legalized in Oregon
Credit: By Mädi - Own work / Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0)

Voters have approved Measure 109 that directs the Oregon Health Authority to create a state-licensed, psilocybin-assisted therapy program over the next two years. In addition, a regulation plan for the substance should be developed by the authorities as psilocybin remains a Schedule I substance under federal rules.

The measure aims to help patients with chronic mental health issues like PTSD, depression and addiction as well as reducing anxiety for patients who are dying.

Law
Germany reports that drug trafficking is consistently high despite Corona
Germany reports that drug trafficking is consistently high despite Corona
Credit: Markus Spiske

The drug trade continues to flourish despite Corona and thanks to digital sales channels. In 2019, the offenses in this context continued to increase, with cocaine in particular increasing.

The German "Federal Criminal Police Office's report on drug crime 2019" shows an increase of 2.6% compared to the previous year.

Above all, the sales channels in the Darknet would take retail off the street and make investigations more difficult. The Berlin trend of so-called "coke taxis" (mobile delivery) would also increase constantly.

The federal government would like to continue to focus on prevention, especially in schools.

Regional News • Americas • Canada
Canada: Cannabis Record Suspension program with 257 granted pardons in first year
Canada: Cannabis Record Suspension program with 257 granted pardons in first year
Credit: unsplash.com / Matthew Karila

In 2019 Canada has revealed a program to grant Canadians an easy way to be granted a pardon if they have a criminal record for simple possession of cannabis.

Since the creation of the program, 458 people have applied for a pardon at the Parole Board of Canada (PBC). Out of these applications, 194 have been returned because of ineligibility or incomplete files. 257 have been granted and two have been discontinued. Five cases are still in the process.

In 2018 Canada has passed the Cannabis Act legalized and regulated the possession, distribution, consumption and cultivation of marijuana for recreational used.

Law
Germany police seizes 1,5 tonnes of cocaine worth €300 million
Germany police seizes 1,5 tonnes of cocaine worth €300 million
Credit: Dietmar Rabich / Wikimedia Commons / “Hamburg, Hafen -- 2016 -- 3090” (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

Police and customs officers at the Port of Hamburg have seized around 1,5 tonnes of cocaine. The illegal substance was hidden in a cargo container between bags of rice.

The illegal cargo has been found and seized in June already when the container was scanned at the customs office Waltershof and was scheduled to be transferred to a different ship to Poland. The rice on the container ship came from Guyana in South America.

According to estimates, the seized cocaine has a street worth of about €300 million.