Connect with us


UK: Court of Appeal says CBD flowers are not narcotic



The Court of Appeals for England and Wales in the United Kingdom has set a new legal precedent by ruling that hemp flower with less than 0,2% THC should not be considered a narcotic. A decision has a significant impact on companies involved in the import and sale of CBD or low-THC hemp flowers.

Despite the important decision, it is essential to recognize that it does not provide a free pass for the import and sale of low-THC flowers, as recently seen in França. The timing and complexity of the case still require caution among companies.

According to statements by Robert Jappie, partner in the Life Sciences area at Fieldfisher, to the Business of Cannabis, this decision does not grant unlimited commercial privileges to CBD companies. However, it substantially reduces the risk of prosecution they may face.

The case at the heart of this decision involves the company Uncle Herb, an online CBD flower retailer in the United Kingdom, managed by Eleanor Margiotta and Dean Taylor. In September 2019, Customs intercepted a batch of flowers imported from Italy, leading to the arrest of the owners a year later. They were accused of being involved in the fraudulent evasion of the importation of goods and of being involved in supplying cannabis to another person, effectively accusing them of being drug dealers. These accusations had devastating effects on the owners and their activity.

The main argument that led to Eleanor Margiotta's success was based on EU legislation, which at the time overrode UK legislation. Under EU law, it was illegal to restrict the movement of c or hemp with a THC level of less than 0,2%, as it was considered an agricultural product.

Consequently, the Misuse of Drugs Act, which classified all flowers of c as controlled substances, it was considered a restriction on the circulation of hemp. As a result, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Eleanor Margiotta, declaring that no wrongdoing had been committed.

It is important to note that the success of Eleanor Margiotta's argument was based on the fact that the transaction took place before the UK officially left the EU, on 31 January 2020. After this date, laws relating to the free movement of goods in the EU no longer apply to the UK.

Therefore, cannabis companies under investigation for activities after this cut-off date cannot make the same argument. However, those facing infringement charges before the cut-off date can confidently argue against their guilt based on this new legal precedent.

While caution is advised, the decision remains potentially powerful for the CBD industry. The Court of Appeal's confirmation that the CBD flower does not contain enough THC to be considered a narcotic product challenges the government's control over it as such.

Robert Jappie suggests that this can cause significant problems for the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) in similar cases. If a product is not a narcotic and does not cause psychoactive effects, public interest in prosecuting companies and individuals as drug dealers diminishes.

This decision may lead the CPS to reassess its position and present a statement justifying the fact that it is treating a non-narcotic product as a narcotic. These actions could have far-reaching consequences and eventually lead to a decision similar to the one taken in France.

The recent Court of Appeal ruling has set a significant precedent for the UK CBD and low-THC hemp flower industry. While it does not offer an unrestricted green light for companies, it certainly provides greater clarity and reduces the risk of prosecution. The implications of this decision are likely to be closely monitored in the coming weeks and could have far-reaching effects on the legal landscape of the sector.
This article was originally published by Ben Stevens on Business of Cannabis and translated and adapted for Cannareporter by João Xabregas.


Watch the Documentary "Patients"

Documentary Patients Laura Ramos help us grow

Mais recentes

International2 days ago

IACM Patient Council participates for the first time in the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs

The IACM — International Association for Cannabinoid Medicines — Patient Council will be present, for the first time, at the next...

Opinion3 days ago

The main mistake of legalization in Germany

German spring will arrive with new flowers. Germany is the third country in the European Union to fully legalize...

Events3 days ago

Spannabis will once again host ICBC Barcelona from the 14th to the 17th of March

The International Cannabis Business Conference (ICBC) will open another edition of Spannabis, on March 14th, with the aim of...

Press Releases4 days ago

Porto, Matosinhos, Valongo and Paredes – Eight arrested for drug trafficking and more than 8000 doses of drugs seized

The Porto Territorial Command, through the Criminal Investigation Center (NIC) of Santo Tirso, between the 20th and...

National5 days ago

Portugal: GNR seizes 3 tons of hashish in the Guadiana River

The Coastal and Border Control Unit (UCCF) of the National Republican Guard (GNR) seized last Friday, the 23rd...

Events5 days ago

Spannabis 2024: Barcelona hosts the 20th edition of the largest cannabis exhibition in the world, from March 15th to 17th

Barcelona is preparing to host the 20th edition of Spannabis, the largest cannabis fair in the world, on the 15th,...

International1 weeks ago

Germany: Bundestag voted today in favor of legalizing cannabis, but Federal Council approval is still needed

The Bundestag debated and voted this afternoon on the project to legalize the personal use of cannabis in the country, with 407...

International1 weeks ago

Germany: Legalization will be discussed this Friday, the 23rd

The German Bundestag will finally deliberate on the legalization of cannabis for personal consumption in the country. The debate, which has been...

Hemp2 weeks ago

Hemp cultivation in the Azores will have an information session on Terceira Island

The Confraria Internacional Cannabis Portugal and CannAzores join forces to promote an Information Session on the Cultivation of...

Health2 weeks ago

CBD and CBC show promising results in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma

A study published in the journal Cancers found that cannabis extracts rich in CBD (cannabidiol) can kill breast cancer cells...