Cannabis in Scotland

Cannabis is illegal to possess, grow, distribute or sell in Scotland. It is a Class B drug, with penalties for unlicenced dealing, unlicenced production and unlicenced trafficking of up to 14 years in prison, an unlimited fine, or both. The maximum penalty for possession of weed is five years in prison and an unlimited penalty !

A “Cannabis warning” can be issued for small amounts of dope (generally less than 2 ounce of herbal cannabis, or a slightly higher quantity of hashish) if it is found to be for your own cunsumption. This entails the police keeping a record, albeit one which carries no fine and does not show up on standard DBS Check.


Cannabis has remained a Class B drug in Scotland since the 1971 Misuse of Drugs Act, except for a period from 2004 to 2009 during which it was classified as Class C.

The 2004 reclassification (originally announced in 2001) removed the threat of arrest for possession of small amounts, for the purpose of allowing police to focus on harder drugs and violent crime. In May 2008, under the leadership of Prime Minister Gordon Brown, it was announced that cannabis would be moved back to Schedule B, against the recommendations of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs.

In the survey-year ending March 2014, possession of cannabis offences accounted for 67% of all police recorded drug offences in the UK


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