The Canadian Government’s Weed Legalization Plan Is a Lot Harsher Than Expected

Article by Manisha Krishnan, Vice

The Canadian Government’s Weed Legalization Plan Is a Lot Harsher Than Expected. Selling to a minor could be punished by up to 14 years in jail.

The Liberal government’s long-anticipated plan for legalizing cannabis in Canada focused heavily on criminality while being scant on details about how weed will be produced and sold.

The government unrolled the Cannabis Act Thursday and said that its priorities are keeping the Canadian public safe, by restricting access of weed to youth and making a dent in organized crime.

In summary, the Liberals have set a federal legal age limit for purchasing pot at 18 years of age, though provinces can alter that as they see fit. Possession of 30 grams of cannabis will be legal. Edibles will be legal with restrictions. And Canadians will be permitted to grow four plants per residence. Producers must be licensed with the federal government. But the retail model as to how weed is sold will be left up to the provinces.

In the meantime, there are new proposed laws and changes to laws that could yield serious consequences.

  • Selling to a minor (under 18) or using a minor to commit a cannabis-related offence could land you up to 14 years in jail for an indictable (more serious) offence or $15,000 fine and/or 18 months in prison for a summary offence. By comparison, establishments who sell liquor to minors in BC are subject to $7,500-$10,000 in fines or a brief suspension.
  • Possession of more than 30 grams of dried flower; knowingly possessing weed that comes from outside the legal system; possessing a flowering plant into a public place is punishable by up to five years in jail for an indictable offence or a $5,000 fine and/or six months in jail for a summary conviction
  • Possessing more than four harvesting plants could result in 14 years of jail time for an indictable offence or 5,000 and/or six months in jail for a summary conviction; possessing more than four non-flowering plants is punishable by up to five years in jail for an indictable offence or a $5,000 fine and/or six months in jail for a summary conviction.
  • Selling cannabis without a license could land you up to 14 years in jail for an indictable offence or a $5,000 fine and/or six months in jail for a summary conviction.

In addition, the government is aggressively tackling the issue of stoned driving.

Read full article here.

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