ARRESTS AS CANNABIS CAFE OPENS

Discussion in 'Coffeeshops' started by Guest, Feb 2, 2004.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

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    ARRESTS AS CANNABIS CAFE OPENS

    THREE people were arrested for drugs offences at Scotland's first
    cannabis cafe, police said last night.

    The arrest of the two men and a woman for possession of cannabis at
    the Purple Haze Cafe coincided with the reclassification of the drug,
    from class B to class C, which came into force yesterday. It is
    understood that Paul Stewart, the owner of the cafe in Leith,
    Edinburgh, was one of the three.

    A Lothian and Borders Police spokesman said: "Three people have been
    arrested and charged with possession of drugs under the Misuse of Drugs Act.

    Two people were seen using drugs within the premises."

    The spokesman said the men, aged 43 and 37, and the 35-year-old woman
    would be made the subject of a report to the procurator fiscal.

    He added that officers had been maintaining a presence outside the
    cafe and had warned customers they could be arrested if seen with any
    illegal substances.

    The cannabis cafe launched as a private members' club yesterday
    afternoon. The initiative means customers will be able to come in off
    the streets and use the soft drug.

    Backed by the Scottish Cannabis Coffeeshop Movement (SCCM), the plan
    aims to highlight what campaigners cite as a confusing legal situation
    surrounding the possession and use of the drug.

    Yesterday's high-profile launch was attended by the SSP MSPs Tommy
    Sheridan and Rosemary Byrne, who came to show "solidarity" with those
    who choose to use cannabis.

    But police warned that despite the downgrading, the drug remained
    illegal and the possession of cannabis was still an offence.

    Speaking yesterday, Mr Stewart, 37, said members would have to bring
    their own cannabis to the cafe because the drug would not be on sale.

    He added the cafe would be tobacco free, but anyone wishing to take
    cannabis would be able to use a vaporiser machine, which eliminates 99
    per cent of the drugs carcinogenic substances.

    Mr Stewart said he wanted to highlight the discrepancy between
    Scotland and the rest of the UK over how the reclassification was
    implemented, adding that he would have to warn all his customers that
    they risked being arrested.

    "In the rest of the UK the presumption of arrest has been taken away,
    but that presumption still remains in Scotland," he said. "It is a
    plain fact that 800,000 people use cannabis in Scotland and we feel
    that we are being socially excluded from taking part in an activity we
    believe is socially acceptable.

    "We are looking for the whole of Scotland to get behind us and we want
    the Executive to be supporting us on this one."

    A statement issued by police last night read: "The change in class
    only impacts on the penalties available to the courts and does not in
    any way alter police procedures.

    "Where evidence of an offence exists, offenders will continue to be
    charged and reported to the procurator fiscal."

    Last night, an SSP spokesman said police should not be "wasting their
    time" prosecuting cannabis users. "We have to stop criminalising
    people for what after all is a victimless crime," he said.

    The opening of the cafe followed a declaration in the Scottish
    Parliament by Jack McConnell, that the downgrading of cannabis would
    have little effect on how police deal with users and dealers.

    At First Minister's Questions, Mr McConnell attacked the SSP's
    "shameful" drugs policy, condemning "those who intend to interpret the
    law for their own ends".

    He told MSPs: "I want to make clear today that reclassification is not the
    same as decriminalisation. The use and sale of cannabis both remain illegal
    in Scotland.

    "I do not anticipate that cannabis reclassification will have any
    significant implications for policing in Scotland."

    This was, he added, "partly because police time and resources in
    Scotland are already concentrating on those most serious drugs".

    Annabel Goldie, the Tories' justice spokeswoman, said the government's
    mixed messages had given a green light to those who think that they
    are above the law.
     
  2. dr ACE

    dr ACE Titanium Member

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    hope they let medical users grow thier own stash atleast,after changing the lawother wise its abit shi**y really,saying they can haveuses cannabisbut not growit???,theforeforecingpeople to resort to the shitty black market or government apporoved pills & potions...
     
  3. Guest

    Guest Guest

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    Such a harmless act and the police still find the time to stop by and arrest them, while other crimes that may be hurting people are being commited.
     
  4. Darthcarlos

    Darthcarlos Silver Member

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    Oh no its cannabis quick before it takes our children and rapes our wives , ahhhhhhhhh.
     
  5. purplehaze

    purplehaze Gold Member

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    Swim thinks if alot of people would open canibis coffee shops in us and keep opening them and keep on it would lead to maybe decriminalization for all the states in us, i dont see how they can decriminalize it in some states and others not its stupid.
     
  6. quinone

    quinone Newbie

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    Opening cannabis shops would just lead to
    more arrests. Its much easier to arrest a store owner then a drug
    dealer whose running from you. It would also just give the
    authorities and feds more ammo to knock marijuanna and its use.</font>