201107061301000.Drug Misuse Lecture by cuiliqing


									Overview of law and drug misuse
Dr Richard O’Neill
                  The UN system

• Some 250 substances are listed in the Schedules annexed to
  the United Nations Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs
  (New York, 1961, amended 1972), the Convention on
  Psychotropic Substances (Vienna, 1971) and the Convention
  against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic
  Substances (introducing control on precursors) (Vienna, 1988)
• The purpose of this listing is to control and limit the use of
  these drugs according to a classification of their therapeutic
  value, risk of abuse and health dangers, and to minimize the
  diversion of precursor chemicals to illegal drug manufacturers
                        UN Conventions
• The UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs of 1961, Art. 36, requests
  State Parties to “adopt such measures as will ensure that …possession… of
  drugs contrary to the provisions of this Convention… shall be punishable
  offences when committed intentionally, and that serious offences shall be
  liable to adequate punishment particularly by imprisonment or other
  penalties of deprivation of liberty.”
• The Convention on Psychotropic Substances of 1971, Art 22 echoes this,
  stating that “each Party shall treat as a punishable offence, when
  committed intentionally, any action contrary to a law or regulation adopted
  in pursuance of its obligations under this Convention, and shall ensure that
  serious offences shall be liable to adequate punishment, particularly by
  imprisonment or other penalty of deprivation of liberty. “
• The Convention Against Illicit Traffic of 1988, Art. 3 requests establishment
  of a criminal offence for possession of drugs for the purposes of trafficking
  (Art. 3.1(a)(iii)), and for the possession for personal consumption (Art.3.2).
                      Narcotic drugs

• Narcotic drugs are classified and placed under international
  control by the 1961 UN Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs,
  as amended in 1972
• The Single Convention limits 'exclusively to medical and
  scientific purposes the production, manufacture, export,
  import, distribution of, trade in, use and possession of drugs'
  (art. 4c)
• The annex to the 1961 Convention classifies narcotic drugs in
  four Schedules:
                   UN Convention: Narcotic drugs
Schedules          Harmfulness                       Degree of control                     Examples of
                                                                                           listed drugs
    I       Substances with addictive        Very strict; 'the drugs in Schedule I are   Cannabis and its
            properties, presenting a serious subject to all measures of control          derivatives, cocaine,
            risk of abuse                    applicable to drugs under this              heroin, methadone,
                                             Convention' (art. 2.1)                      morphine, opium
    II      Substances normally used for Less strict                                     Codeine,
            medical purposes and given the                                               dihydrocodeine,
            lowest risk of abuse                                                         propiram
   III      Preparations of substances        Lenient; according to the World Health Preparations of
            listed in Schedule II, as well as Organisation, these preparations       codeine,
            preparations of cocaine           present no risk of abuse               dihydrocodeine,
   IV       The most dangerous               Very strict, leading to a complete ban Cannabis and
            substances, already listed in    on 'the production, manufacture, export cannabis resin,
            Schedule I, which are            and import of, trade in, possession or heroin
            particularly harmful and of      use of any such drug except for
            extremely limited medical or     amounts which may be necessary for
            therapeutic value                medical and scientific research' (art.
              Psychotropic substances

• Psychotropic substances are placed under international
  control by the 1971 United Nations Convention on
  Psychotropic Substances
• The objectives of this Convention are again to limit the use of
  these substances to medical and scientific purposes (arts. 5
  and 7)
• While some psychotropic substances may have therapeutic
  value, they also present a dangerous risk of abuse
• The annex to the 1971 UN Convention on Psychotropic
  Substances also classifies substances in four Schedules:
         UN Convention: Psychotropic substances
Schedules          Harmfulness              Degree of control          Examples of listed
    I       Substances presenting a high Very strict; use is        LSD, MDMA (ecstasy),
            risk of abuse, posing a         prohibited except for   mescaline, psilocybine,
            particularly, serious threat to scientific or limited   tetrahydrocannabinol
            public health which are of very medical purposes
            little or no therapeutic value
    II      Substances presenting a risk of Less strict             Amphetamines and
            abuse, posing a serious threat                          amphetamine-type stimulants
            to public health which are of
            low or moderate therapeutic
   III      Substances presenting a risk of These substances are    Barbiturates, including
            abuse, posing a serious threat available for medical    amobarbital, buprenorphine
            to public health which are of   purposes
            moderate or high therapeutic
   IV       Substances presenting a risk of These substances are    Tranquillisers, analgesics,
            abuse, posing a minor threat to available for medical   narcotics, including
            public health with a high       purposes                allobarbital, diazepam,
            therapeutic value                                       lorazepam, phenobarbital,
             The European Union system
• European Union legislation on classification is limited to precursors, via
  the Regulation (EC) No 273/2004 of the European Parliament and of the
  Council of 11 February 2004 on drug precursors, which regulates intra-
  Community trade, and by the Council Regulation (EC) No 111/2005 of 22
  December 2004 laying down rules for the monitoring of trade between
  the Community and third countries in drug precursors
• Nevertheless, the Council Decision 2005/387/JHA of 10 May 2005 on the
  information exchange, risk-assessment and control of new psychoactive
  substances, can provoke a Council Decision requiring countries to put a
  drug under national controls equivalent to those controls for substances
  listed in the UN Conventions of 1961 and 1971
• This replaced the Joint Action 97/396/JHA of 16 June 1997 adopted by the
  Council on the basis of Article K.3 of the Treaty on European Union,
  concerning the information exchange, risk assessment and the control of
  new synthetic drugs, which triggered three Council Decisions requiring
  countries to put a synthetic drug under national controls equivalent to
  those for substances in UN71 Schedules I and II
            National systems in the EU
• Within their domestic legislations, some Member States
  distinguish between narcotic and psychotropic substances.
  Others combine the two in a list that is based on the level of
  medicinal use or potential harm
• Some Member States also classify narcotic and psychotropic
  substances in order to determine the prosecution procedure
  or the (range of) punishment for illegal activities involving
  those substances
• In some countries, e.g. Belgium, Spain, Ireland, Italy, Cyprus,
  Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Portugal, and the
  UK, the penalty for a drugs offence officially varies according
  to the nature of the substance involved
             National systems in the EU
• Countries are permitted by the UN Conventions to control
  other substances also
   – for a comprehensive list of some 500 substances classified at
     international and national levels, see the Substance and Classifications
     Table in the ELDD's Legal Reports section.
• Placing a new substance under control may take a varying
  amount of time depending on the national legal system
  involved; a decree may be signed by a Minister in a couple of
  days, whereas changes to a law might require the assent of
  both houses/chambers of Parliament
• Some countries have therefore created a rapid classification
Citius Altius Fortius

  Drugs and sport
      Worldwide anti-doping conventions

• The International Convention Against Doping in Sport of the
  UNESCO came into force on 1 February 2007 following up on
  concrete measures taken by the Council of Europe (Anti-
  Doping Convention, 1989) and the World Anti-Doping Agency
  (World Anti-Doping Code, 2003)†
• This convention aims to harmonise the efforts made against
  doping at international level

  † World Anti-Doping Code adopted by the World Anti-Doping Agency at
  the World Conference on Doping in Sport, Copenhagen, 5 March 2003,
  and the Copenhagen Declaration on Anti-Doping in Sport
    International Convention against Doping in
                   Sport UNESCO

• The Convention represents the first time that governments around the
  world have agreed to apply the force of international law to anti-doping.
  This is important because there are specific areas where only
  governments possess the means to take the fight against doping forward.
• The Convention also helps to ensure the effectiveness of the World Anti-
  Doping Code (the Code)
• As the Code is a non-government document that applies only to members
  of sports organizations, the Convention provides the legal framework
  under which governments can address specific areas of the doping
  problem that are outside the domain of the sports movement.
• As such, the Convention helps to formalize global anti-doping rules,
  policies and guidelines in order to provide an honest and equitable playing
  environment for all athletes
              International standards

• The World Anti-Doping Code works in conjunction with five
  International Standards:
   – Prohibited list
   – International Standard for Testing
   – International Standard for Laboratories
   – International Standard for Therapeutic Use Exemptions
   – International Standard for the Protection of Privacy and
     Personal Information

• The current official definition of doping is given
  based on the World Anti-Doping Code as follows:

  “Doping is defined as the occurrence of one or more
  of the anti-doping rule violations set forth in Article
  2.1 through article 2.8 of the World Anti-Doping
                   The 2010 Prohibited List
                   World Anti-doping Code
• Substances prohibited at all times (in- and out-of-competition)
   – S1 Anabolic Androgenic Steroids (AAS)
      e.g. nandrolone; testosterone (exogenous and endogenous AAS)
      e.g. others such as clenbuterol
   – S2 Peptide hormones, growth factors and related substances
      e.g. erythropoietin (EPO); growth hormone
   – S3 Beta-2 agonists
         all beta-2 agonists (including both optical isomers where relevant) are
         prohibited except salbutamol (maximum 1600 micrograms over 24 hours)
         and salmeterol when taken by inhalation in accordance with the
         manufacturers’ recommended therapeutic regime.
   – S4 Hormone antagonists and modulators
   – S5 Diuretics and other masking agents
                The 2010 Prohibited List
                World Anti-doping Code
• Methods prohibited at all times (in- and out-of-competition)
  – M1 Enhancement of oxygen transfer
     e.g. blood doping; blood or red blood cell products;
       haemoglobin-based blood substitutes
  – M2 Chemical and physical manipulation
     • e.g tampering with samples; urine substitution;
       sequential withdrawal, manipulation and reinfusion of
       whole blood
  – M3 Gene doping
                      The 2010 Prohibited List
                      World Anti-doping Code
• Substances and methods prohibited in-competition
   – S6 Stimulants*
        e.g. amphetamine, adrenaline; ephedrine, psuedoephedrine (with some
   – S7 Narcotics
        e.g. buprenorphine, diamorphine methadone, morphine
   – S8 Cannabinoids
        Natural (e.g. cannabis, hashish, marijuana) or synthetic delta 9
        tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and are prohibited.
   – S9 Glucocorticosteroids
        all glucocorticosteroids are prohibited when administered by oral,
        intravenous, intramuscular or rectal routes
   *Note; some substances included in the 2010 Monitoring Program such as caffeine,
      phenylephrine, phenylpropanolamine, are not considered as Prohibited Substances.
                    The 2010 Prohibited List
                    World Anti-doping Code
• Substances prohibited in particular sports
   – P1. Alcohol
      Alcohol (ethanol) is prohibited In-Competition only, in the certain
         sports, e.g. archery (FITA); motorcycling (FIM)
   – P2 Beta-blockers
      Beta-blockers are prohibited In-Competition only, in the certain sports,
         e.g. archery (FITA) (also prohibited out of competition) ; billiards and
         Snooker (WCBS); Shooting (ISSF, IPC) (also prohibited Out-of-
         Competition)wrestling (FILA);
           Therapeutic Use Exemptions

• Athletes, like all others, may have illnesses or conditions that
  require them to take particular medications
• Difficulty when drugs prescribed for legitimate therapeutic
  purposes also possess performance enhancing properties
• If the medication an athlete is required to take to treat an
  illness or condition happens to fall under the Prohibited List, a
  Therapeutic Use Exemption (TUE) may give that athlete the
  authorization to take the needed medicine
• The purpose of the International Standard for Therapeutic
  Use Exemptions (ISTUE) is to ensure that the process of
  granting TUEs is harmonized across sports and countries
            Athlete Biological Passport

• The fundamental principle of the Athlete Biological Passport is
  based on the monitoring of selected biological variables which
  indirectly reveal the effects of doping, as opposed to the
  traditional direct detection of doping
• Biological monitoring throughout an athlete’s sporting career
  should make any prohibited preparation far harder to
           Private & Criminal Law
• Under International Olympic Committee rules, athletes face
  disqualification for a doping offense — but no criminal
• In some countries inquiries into doping in sport are conducted
  as a matter of private law between the sportsperson and the
  administrators of his sport
• Spanish, Italian, and Belgian governments, for example, are
  involved in public law criminal justice investigations
• Italy is one of the few countries that imposes criminal
  sanctions for doping offenses, on top of the normal sporting
  sanctions - Law number 376 passed in 2000 enables criminal
  penalties for doping
                        anti-doping laws
• Ministry for Youth Policies and Sport Activities performs central
  government functions in relation to sport, and policy-making and
  coordination functions regarding youth policies (Decree-Law No 181 of
  May 2006).
• The Disciplina della tutela sanitaria delle attivita’ sportive e della lotta
  contro il doping, Law number 376 of 14 December 2000, provides, in
  article 9, for the imprisonment of any athlete using banned substances
  and a fine.
• For any person, including any doctor, athlete, manager, or attendant to a
  sports team, supplying or administering banned drugs to athletes the Act
  imposes imprisonment and a fine. The sentence is harsher if the substance
  poses a risk to the athlete's health, or if a minor is involved.
• The Act also allows judges to impose permanent sanction from
  employment with a sports organization
                         Italy (cont)
• Law No 376/2000 implements the European Anti-doping
  Convention and introduces the offence of doping into the
  Italian legal system
• Under paragraph 3 of Article 1: ‘equivalent to doping are the
  administration of pharmaceutical products or biologically
  active substances and the adoption of medical practices not
  justified by pathological conditions, aimed at and in any case
  suitable for modifying the results and checks on the use of
  pharmaceutical products, substances and practices indicated
  in paragraph 2’
• The object of such legal protection is the protection of health
  explicitly recognised by Article 32 of the Constitution
                         Italy (cont)
• Protection of health also underlies the exception in Article 1,
  paragraph 4:
  ‘The use of doping substances is allowed in certain
  documented and medically certified pathological conditions.
  Treatment, moreover, must be in accordance with methods
  laid down by the relevant European or national law and doses
  may not exceed those set for actual therapeutic
  requirements. Only under such conditions, though haven
  taken substances otherwise prohibited, may a player take part
  in matches, provided this does not jepardise his psycho-
  physical state of health and is not in breach of sporting rules.’
• In order to prove that substances are not merely taken with a
  view to improving sporting performance, the law provides
  that the player must make the relevant medical
  documentation available to sporting authorities

• Article 3 of Law 273/2000 sets up a ‘Watchdog Commission’
  to oversee and monitor health standards in sport
• The government department responsible for sport differs
  according to the particular home country. Responsibility for
  sport at UK level and for England lies with the Department of
  Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). DCMS policies help to
  deliver Government's 'sport for all' policy and realise its
  ambitions for sporting success at elite level. The Department
  oversees the work of Sport England and UK Sport (the Non-
  Departmental Public Bodies set up in 1997 to replace the
  Sports Council for Great Britain) and helps set the
  Government strategy for a whole range of sporting issues
• On 14 December 2009, UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) assumed
  responsibility from UK Sport for ensuring that sports bodies in
  the UK are compliant with the World Anti-Doping Code
                       UK legislation
• The UK does not have specific anti-doping legislation, but uses
  a variety of legislation to control the trafficking and supply of
  doping substances and to facilitate information sharing
  between the National Anti-Doping Organisation (UK Anti-
  Doping) and law enforcement agencies
• Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 controls drugs whose misuse is, or
  is capable of being harmful to the individual and of causing a
  social problem
• A number of substances on WADA’s prohibited list are
  controlled under the Misuse of Drugs Act, including anabolic
  steroids and human growth hormones.
Drugs and the workplace
      Workplace drug and alcohol testing

• More than six million EU workers are affected by accidents at
  work each year – it is unknown how many are drug or alcohol-
• There is no specific EU legislation or generally accepted
  guidelines on workplace drug and alcohol testing
• Finland (2003), Ireland (2005) and Norway (2005) have
  legislation that clearly and specifically addresses the issue of
  drug testing in the workplace
• The European Agency for Safety and Health at Work
  promotes employers to ‘develop clear policies on control of
  alcohol and other substance abuse’
Italian Focal Point of the European Agency
       for Safety and Health at Work
• In Italy, the institutional system of safety and health at work
  comes under the Ministry of Labour and Health, in
  conjunction with the Regional Coordination Committees and
  the social partners
• Their responsibilities include delivering advice for legislative
  developments, supervision, promoting health and assisting
• The Italian Focal Point is represented by Ispesl, which
  coordinates the national network of the European Agency for
  Safety and Health at Work
    United Kingdom Focal Point of the
 European Agency for Safety and Health at
• The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) administers the UK
  Focal Point
• There is a long tradition of health and safety regulation in
  Great Britain, as far back as the 19th century
• The foundation of the current health and safety system was
  established by the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974
• Broadly, HSE enforces health and safety law in industrial
  workplaces and over 400 local authorities enforce in
  commercial workplaces
               International level
           Workplace drug testing (WDT)
• On an international level, the matter might be covered by Universal
  Declaration of Human Rights, art 12 - "No one shall be subjected to
  arbitrary interference with his privacy".
• The 1996 International Labour Organization (ILO) Code of Practice on
  Management of alcohol and drug-related issues in the workplace, s.7.2,
  states that testing should be undertaken in accordance with national laws
  and practice
   – the Guiding Principles of testing, in Annex V of the Code of Practice,
      states that the written policy should indicate any laws and regulations
      concerning drug testing that may apply
   – it should emphasis workers’ rights, employers’ rights, public rights and
      individual rights
                  European legislation

• Council Directive 89/391/EEC of 12 June 1989 on the
  introduction of measures to encourage improvements in the
  safety and health of workers at work.
   – workers have certain obligations under article 13 of
      Directive 89/391, which provides the general framework
      for health and safety management, risk identification and
   – the directive says it is the responsibility of workers to take
      care, as far as possible, of their own and colleague’s safety
      and health in accordance with their employers’ training
      and instructions
                       European level
• The European Convention on Human Rights, adopted in 1950
  guarantees the right to privacy, except “in the interest of
  national security, public safety or the economic well-being of
  the country, for the prevention of disorder and crime, for the
  protection of health and morals, or for the protection of the
  rights and freedoms of others”
• In its Art.8. Two cases appealing against WDT have been
  declared inadmissible by the Court based on the specific facts
  of these cases:
   – Wretlund v Sweden (Application no. 46210/99) concerning a cleaner at
     a nuclear power plant, and
   – Madsen v Denmark (Application no. 58341/00) concerning a ferry
     company employee
                        National level
• Since the European Convention on Human Rights and the EU
  directives on data protection and health and safety at work
  has been implemented in almost all countries’ laws there is a
  high degree of harmonisation on some basic principles
• The emphasis on the health aspects, rather than the possible
  illegality of drug taking: in many countries the occupational
  doctor can only inform the employer whether an employee is
  “fit for work”, rather than revealing the full results of the test;
  the employer has a legal duty to provide a safe place of work
• The employment aspects: countries vary considerably in their
  emphasis on testing before or during employment
• Sanctions: some countries specifically penalise unjustified
  testing with criminal fines, either as a breach of workers’
  privacy or as a breach of privacy generally
• Article 125 of law No 162 (26 June 1990)
   – workers holding positions that involve a threat to security, and the
      physical safety and health of third parties may be tested for intoxicants
      in public undertakings
   – testing is paid for by the employer – if positive worker will be
      suspended – employer may be fined if found liable
• United Conference No 99/2007 Legislative Decree n.81/2008 on health
  and safety in the workplace ( Agreement Stato-Regioni of 18 September
   – establish mandatory procedures for screening tests (performed by
      occupational health specialists) and confirmatory tests (performed by
      laboratories identified by regional Directives) for at-risk workers
      (public/private transportation, oil/gas companies, explosive/fireworks
 Legislation on                        Workplace laws                         Privacy        Data
WDT, for applicants                                                            laws       protection
   or workers
The only specific     Art. 125 of the DPR 309/90 [the main drug law]                    Law No. 675 of
law on drug-          states that certain categories of workers, holding                31 December
testing at work       “positions which involve a threat to security and                 1996 implements
applies to certain    the physical safety and health of third parties”,                 Directive
categories of         must undergo pre-employment and regular testing                   95/46/EC.
workers to be         for drug addiction at the expense of their employer.              Supplemented
identified in a       In the case of a positive result of the drug testing,             and partially
decree jointly by     the employer must relieve the worker from the                     amended by
the Ministry of       position which involve a threat to security and the               Presidential
Labour and Social     physical safety and health of third parties. The                  Decree No.
Security, jointly     employer may be fined up to €25,000 for non-                      318/99 on
with the Minister     compliance                                                        'minimum
of Health. Until      Art. 124 (of the DPR n. 309/90) obliges                           security
now no decree         employers of addicts with a permanent contract to                 measures for
has been issued       keep these posts open for up to 3 years (without                  personal data
                      pay) while the addict is rehabilitated                            handling' and
                                                                                        legislative decree
                                                                                        No. 467/2001.

                          UK law

• The legal position on drug testing at work is confused
• In the UK, for example, there is no direct legislation and
  important legal questions hinge on interpretation of a range
  of provisions in health and safety, employment, human rights
  and data protection law –
• Human Rights Act 1998
• Data Protection Act 1998
• Employment law
• Assault and consent
         The responsibilities of employers
• Health and Safety at Work Act, 1974
    – employers have a duty to protect their employees’ health, safety and welfare
      in the workplace
    – they are also legally responsible For the welfare of third parties
• The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations, 1999
    – these regulations oblige employers to conduct assessments of health and
      safety risk to their employees and third parties
• The Transport and Works Act 1992
    – it is a criminal offence for certain workers including drivers and conductors on
      buses or trains – to work under the influence of alcohol or drugs
    – under these circumstances, if the employer has not exercised ‘due diligence’ in
      ensuring that the employee is not under the influence of alcohol or drugs, he
      or she is also guilty of a criminal offence
    – the avoidance of criminal liability, alongside the obvious safety concerns, has
      led many to introduce drug testing programmes
          Legal & Ethical Arguments

• Legal arguments
   – safety
   – business
   – prosecution
• ethical arguments
   – deterrence
   – privacy
   – data protection
   – discrimination

• Annually at least 17,000 alcohol-related deaths on EU roads*
• 2001 European Commission’s Communication on alcohol calls
  for an enforced maximum limit of 0.5g/L or less lowered to
  0.2g/L for inexperienced, two-wheel, large vehicle or
  dangerous goods drivers, and random breath testing so that
  everyone is checked every 3 years on average

*Institute of Alcohol Studies London July 2007

• Different countries have their own structure and traditions
  when it comes to dealing with the problem caused by driving
  under the influence of alcohol
• This is reflected in, among other things, the setting of
  statutory alcohol limits, the methods used to enforce the law
  and the sanctions imposed for people convicted of this traffic
• Statutory blood-alcohol limits for driving vary from 20–80
  mg/100 ml in EU countries and this fourfold difference has
  more to do with political attitudes rather than traffic safety
         BAC Levels in European countries

BAC         Countries

Zero        Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, Slovak Republic

0.2g/L      Estonia, Norway, Poland, Sweden

0.4g/L      Lithuania

0.5g/L      Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Denmark, Finland, France,
            Germany, Greece, Iceland, Italy*, Latvia, Netherlands, Portugal,
            Slovenia, Spain†,Switzerland, Turkey

0.8g/L      Ireland, Luxembourg, Malta, United Kingdom
            †A limit of 0.3g/L BAC applies to common carriers such as bus and truck drivers and
            inexperienced drivers;
            *Note: for professional drivers and for people who have been licensed for fewer than
            three years, there is a zero-tolerance policy: the limit is 0.

            BAC = blood alcohol concentration
• For many medications it is difficult to predict whether, how,
  when and for how long they will affect a person’s ability to
  drive safely
   – some medicines may cause:
       • drowsiness
       • dizziness or feeling light-headed
       • difficulty concentrating, etc
• a person’s driving ability can also be affected by the medical
  condition for which they are taking the medicine
• many over-the-counter medicines, including remedies for
  coughs, colds, flu and hay fever, cause unwanted drowsiness
  which might impair driving
Drug misuse and abuse
                         National Legislation
Country Main laws and lists of substances         Classification
                  (with examples)          formally determines
 Italy Controlled substances in Italy are Illicit activities related to
                classified in six lists attached to the   drugs are punished
                Decree 4 March 1992 and amendments.       differently according to
                List I includes opiates and cocaine       the list to which the drug
                derivatives;                              belongs: lists II and IV are
                List II cannabis;                         less severely punished
                List III highly addictive barbiturates;   than lists I and III.
                List IV medical substances;               Precursors are controlled
                List V special preparation containing     by the Legislative Decree
                drugs;                                    258 of 12 April 1996
                List VI stimulants.                       which implements EEC
                                                          Directive 92/109.
                   National Legislation
 Country     Main laws and lists of substances        Classification formally
                     (with examples)                   determines penalty?

 United The Misuse of Drugs Act 1971         Penalty linked to drug
Kingdom determines three classes for misuse, type
           based on the level of harm caused:
           Class A; Class B; Class C.
            Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001
           denote five schedules for regulatory
           I: including cannabis, hallucinogens;
           II: including most opiates, cocaine;
           III: including some barbiturates, some
           IV: benzodiazepines; & anabolic
           V: preparations.
                                                    Source EMCDDA
                    Illegal possession of drugs
                            EU legislation
                Description                    Basic possession offences and penalties
European        The Council Framework          Maximum of at least 1-3 years.
                Decision* 2004/757/JHA         When there are large quantities of drugs,
Union           of 25 October 2004 laying      OR involvement of drugs which cause the
                down minimum provisions        most harm to health or has resulted in
                on the constituent             significant damage to the health of a
                elements of criminal acts      number of persons: maximum of at least 5-
                and penalties in the field     10 years.
                of illicit drug trafficking.   If committed within the framework of a
                Article 2(1)(c) requests       criminal organisation: maximum of at least
                punishment of the              10 years.
                possession of drugs with a     When precursors are involved, and the
                view to trafficking them       offence is committed within the framework
                                               of a criminal organisation or intended to be
                *This Framework-Decision       used for production or manufacture of
                must be implemented by         drugs: maximum of at least 5-10 years.
                12 May 2006.
                Illegal possession of drugs
                    National Legislation
                Description                      Basic possession offences and
                                                 penalties (imprisonment)
Italy           Under the DPR 309/90,            Basic: Lists I, III; 8 - 20 years. Lists II, IV; 2- 6
                Art.73-75, possession for        years.
                personal use is punished by      Quantity for personal use: For substances
                administrative sanctions         in lists I, III, administrative sanctions for 2-
                (withdrawal of driving           4 months; for substances in lists II, IV (incl.
                licence etc), though for lists   cannabis) administrative sanctions for 1-3
                II-IV (incl. cannabis) the       months.
                prefect will drop the case
                with a warning.

                Any other possession will
                be punished according to
                the quantity and the nature
                of the substance.
                     Illegal possession of drugs
                         National Legislation
                     Description                    Basic possession offences and
                                                      penalties (imprisonment)
UK        In the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 s.5      Basic: Class A drugs: up to 6 months and/or
          there are two possession offences:       a fine (summary); up to 7 years (on
          Possession, and possession with          indictment);
          intent to supply. Punishment is          Class B: up to 3 months and/or a fine
          linked to the class of drugs involved    (summary); up to 5 years (on indictment);
          (A, B, C, with A being the most          Class C: up to 3 months and/or a fine
          harmful), and whether sentencing is      (summary); up to 2 years (on indictment).
          by a Magistrate’s Court (summary) or     With intent to supply: Class A drugs: up to
          in a Crown Court (on indictment).        6 months and/or a fine (summary); life (on
          The Drugs Act 2005 introduced the        indictment);
          concept of a prescribed amount,          Class B: up to 6 months and/or a fine
          above which there is a presumption       (summary); up to 14 years (on indictment);
          of intent to supply – Regulations will   Class C: up to 3 months and/or a fine
          define these amounts. Other factors      (summary); up to 14 years (on indictment)
          may also be taken into account
      Designed or Synthetic drugs
• ‘Legal Highs’ are substances which produce the
  same, or similar effects, to drugs such as cocaine and
  ecstasy, but are not controlled under the Misuse of
  Drugs Act
• They are however, considered illegal under current
  medicines legislation to sell, supply or advertise for
  “human consumption” - to get round this sellers
  refer to them as research chemicals, plant food, bath
  crystals or pond cleaner
 How these substances dealt with?
• Different approaches:
   – following advice from the Advisory Council on the Misuse
     of Drugs (ACMD) UK Government can ban substance under
     the Misuse of Drugs Act, e.g. Spice, GBL and BZP (2009)
     and mephedrone and related compounds (2010)
   – in the US temporary scheduling allows for substances to be
     classified as controlled drugs for 1 year while new
     evidence is gathered
   – in New Zealand legislation allows for substances to be
     placed on a restricted list
         Approaches to regulation
• individual control (universal) – specific listing
   – lists specific substances named one by one
• generic control (UK, Ireland, New Zealand) – generic listing
   – defines a family of substances based on substitution patterns in a
     parent molecule where the type, number and position of substituents
     may be precisely specified
• analogue control (USA, Latvia, Norway, New Zealand)
   – covers a family of substances due to their
      • similar chemical structure
      • similar pharmacological activity
• ‘all-encompassing control’ (Ireland)
   – covers essentially all psychoactive substances based on their activity
     on the CNS
                       Other issues
• cognition enhancing drugs – so called ‘smart’ drugs
• misuse/dependence and addiction to prescription and over-
  the-counter medication
   – Directed use: the use of POM/OTC medicines in the way they ave been
     prescribed by a qualified medical professional
   – Non-directed use: the use of medicines by an individual for whom
     they have not be prescribed or taking doses of a medicines above
     prescribed levels
       • Prescription medicines, e.g.
           – benzodiazepines and z-drugs; prescribed opiates (painkillers)
       • Over-the-counter medicines (OTC), e.g.
           – Over-the-counter opiates (painkillers); antihistamines
      Thank you for your kind attention
la ringrazio molto per la cortese attenzione

To top