LondonNet News Headlines
02/07/01
South London Police Chill Out on Cannabis
- Just a warning for dope users, but drug still illegal, say ministers

HOPES among those campaigning for the legalisation of cannabis that a trial scheme in south London could lead to the de-criminalisation of the drug have taken a blow after government ministers played down the idea.

Under the pilot project in Lambeth, police will now merely issue a formal warning to those caught in possession of hash, dope, skunk, weed or grass.

But the government is at pains to stress that the softer approach does not herald de-criminalisation. "It is not the case that cannabis has been de-criminalised or that the law has been changed," said Home Office Minister John Denham.

The scheme is being sold to anti-drug sections of the public by stressing that police resources will be switched from hunting cannabis dealers to those peddling harder drugs.



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