Pubdate: Mon, 29 Dec 2003
Source: Jamaica Observer (Jamaica)
Copyright: 2003 The Jamaica Observer Ltd,
Author: Matthew Hulett


Dear Editor, There is absolutely no requirement in any of the
international drug control treaties that personal possession of any
drug be punished through criminal sanctions. The only requirement is
that such possession be a violation of law.

Decriminalisation equates to making possession a civil offence
(punishable by fine only) versus a criminal offence (punishable by
being jailed). If it were true that decriminalisation violated these
treaties, then 12 states in the United States would already be in
violation of these treaties for having already instituted
decriminalisation of personal marijuana of possession. As would also
be the nations of Italy, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, Australia,
Belgium, Germany, and Holland.

In Ohio, a state in the United States, for more than 20 years, the
penalty for possession of 100 grammes is only US$100. In Maine, there
is only a fine of US$200 to US$400 for possession of 1.25 ounces. In
California, one ounce is subject to a fine of only US$100.

Matthew Hulett,

Brick, N.J. USA
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