There is indeed a ban on the use and possession of soft drugs on the street in the evening and night. The cabinet announced this last week, but paradoxically, it did not seem to be possible by law. Grapperhaus now states that it is possible.
According to the reasoning, the measure seemed to violate the tolerance policy: something that has already been prohibited, but is tolerated, cannot be prohibited. The cabinet wanted to prohibit the use of soft drugs in public space between 8 p.m. and 7 a.m.
After studying the law, Minister Ferd Grapperhaus (Justice) now writes in a letter to the Lower House that all confusion was unnecessary. “Possession of soft drugs is not covered by the tolerance policy,” he writes, referring to Article 3 of the Opium Act. “The tolerance policy only applies to the sale of hemp and hashish (no other soft drugs) in coffee shops. This sale is tolerated under certain conditions; this means that the legal prohibition is not enforced. ”
Grapperhaus does believe that “quantities of less than five grams have a low detection priority”. “This means that if such quantities are found, the drugs will be confiscated, but in principle no prosecution will be initiated. If someone refuses to donate the drugs, they can still be prosecuted. At the moment, enforcement of the criminal ban on soft drugs, including hemp and hashish, is therefore still possible. That is regular policy: joints or other user quantities of soft drugs are regularly seized by the police. ”
Incidentally, the minister acknowledges that a ban on the “use” of soft drugs is not explicitly included in the Opium Act. But about this he writes: ‘Since one will also have to possess these in order to use soft drugs, action can be taken in all cases against people who are found in the public space (at any time) with soft drugs, even if they are being used at that time. the use is. ‘
The ban on soft drugs on the street was introduced at the request of the security regions. The SGP had asked for clarification after it appeared that it could not be banned.