|Recreational drugs fund crime. Importing class A drugs such as co-caine, heroin, and Crystal Meth re-quire access to large organised crime networks. Networks which are more often than not involved with people trafficking, sex slavery, and other criminal activities.|
|As for cannabis, it is possible to grow it in the UK, but only illegally, and to grow it in any large quantities requires serious planning. Furthermore, drug dealing leads to violent crime. Cressida Dick, the metropolitan police commissioner, has recently said that drug dealing is one of the main reasons for the recent spate of homicides in London. While we are not in London, and we do not have much of a drug problem by comparison to some of the more urban towns, people should think twice before buying or taking drugs. Cannabis may be harmless, it may even have some medical benefits, but the market that produces it is not one that you want to endorse.|
|Furthermore, if your friend gives you some drugs, take for example cannabis, they are technically at risk of prosecution for possession with intent to supply. The charge of intent to supply does not just require that you intended to profit from the drugs in your possession. It can mean that you intended to pass a joint between friends, or buying drugs on their be-half. A successful prosecution for this offence can lead to anything from a community order to a five-year jail sentence. Cannabis can be detected in your hair up to three months after you take the drug, evidence which is then admissible in court. Being liable to prosecution is not something you want to risk and if you’re an international student a conviction would call your visa into question.|
|In short the use of drugs leads to crime and carries a large criminal risk to the user. If you find yourself in a situation where someone offers you drugs, remember, you can say no, and the person offering the drugs to you is breaking the law. There is a clear argument, evidenced from California, in favour of drug legalisation because it leads to a reduction in crime and frees up space in the courts. But we are not in California. Drugs are illegal, and as long as they are illegal you can be sure that through using them you are committing and funding crime.
This article was written as an addendum to Kaitlin Shaw’s article discussing drug use in St Andrews. Click here to read it.
Picture by Edward Emery