Did You Know

Teenagers who use cannabis regularly are much more likely to suffer from depression

Society's attitudes to drugs are complex, confusing and sometimes contradictory. Laws relating to drugs can be equally hard to make sense of.

Illegal drugs are normally put into three categories, depending on how harmful they are, with Class A being the most harmful and Class C being the least:
  • Class A – cocaine, heroin, ecstasy, LSD.
  • Class B – cannabis, amphetamines (speed) mephrdrone (M-cat)
  • Class C – ketamine, tranquilisers.
If you have drugs in your possession you could be charged, whether they belong to you or not, the punishment depends on which class of drug it is:
  • Class A – up to 7 years in prison and/or an unlimited fine.
  • Class B – up to 5 years in prison and/or an unlimited fine.
  • Class C – up to 2 years in prison and/or an unlimited fine.
Supplying drugs to others is a very serious offence and the law considers the passing of drugs to others, whether for payment or not, to be supplying.
  • Class A – up to life in prison and/or an unlimited fine
  • Class B/C – up to 14 years in prison and/or an unlimited fine
Legal highs are substances which produce the same or similar effects to illegal drugs such as cocaine, ecstasy & cannabis. They are distinguished by their content rather than their effect and therefore avoid being classified as illegal substances under the Misuse of Drugs Act.

Legal highs can look very similar to illegal drugs, such as cocaine & ecstasy and if found in your possession by the police they could be confiscated for testing, you could be detained for questioning or even arrested.

Legal highs cannot be sold for ‘Human Consumption’. So sellers usually refer to their products as pond cleaners, bath crystals and even plant food.  Just because a substance is legal it doesn’t mean that it is safe for human consumption. Some drugs which are advertised as legal highs may actually even contain one or two substances which are illegal.

There has been very little research on the effects of legal highs on people. From recent high profile cases it is clear that legal highs are far from harmless and can have similar health risks to taking illegal drugs.

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