Under the 7 to 1 high court ruling, laws against cannabis products remain on the books but police may no longer make arrests for its possession. The court held that possession of cannabis products "in small quantities and exclusively for personal use" would be legal. The ruling leaves it up to the states to decide what amount shall be "small." The government estimates that 8 million of Germany's 80 million citizens use marijuana and hashish regularly.
The new policy resulting from this court ruling will not be as tolerant as that of the Netherlands where marijuana and hash are openly sold in more than 1,000 coffee shops throughout the country. In Poland and Spain, cannabis possession is legal but it may not be freely sold. Belgium, Switzerland, Italy and England have laws against possession but rarely enforce them. As reported in the July, 1994, issue of PLN, the Colombian Supreme Court also recently ruled that the criminalization of marijuana possession was unconstitutional under that country's constitution. As the rest of the world calls a truce in the failed "war on drugs" the US continues its futile effort of draconian penalties and ever harsher punishments.
The National Times, August, 1994.
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