Pubdate: Wed, 07 Jun 2006
Source: Scotsman (UK)
DRUG users caught in possession of as few as five ecstasy tablets or enough cannabis for just ten joints could face up to 14 years in jail for dealing under proposals being considered at Westminster.
New Home Secretary John Reid is looking at tough thresholds on the amount of illegal substances classified as merely possession rather than intent to supply under the latest anti-drugs legislation.
The move is a radical U-turn from his predecessor but one in the job David Blunkett, who 18 months ago took the decision to reclassify cannabis as a Class C rather than a Class B drug and recommend it to the police that being caught with small quantities of the drug should normally be dealt with by confiscation and an informal warning.
But now Dr Reid has drawn up Draconian guidelines which will apply to the whole of the UK.
For cannabis resin the limit would be cut to five grammes compared to the committee's original suggestion of 133.
Cannabis leaf would also have a five grammes threshold compared to the initial 500 grammes.
For ecstasy the limit would be five pills against ten while the limit for amphetamines would be 14 grammes in line with the committee's original proposal.
Possession of cocaine, heroin or crack cocaine would be just two grammes against seven.