Drug Offences, drug crimes are one of the accusations that people from other countries are confronted the most with. For a lot of visitors their stay in Berlin is also the time where they want to try things they never would try at home. Berlin has the reputation of a city with a vivid nightlife or club culture and liberal rules on drugs. But that can turn out as a dangerous illusion:
Do not confuse the risk of getting caught with a liberal drug policy
It is probably true that the risk of being caught in the act is relatively low due to the sheer size of the city and its drug positive communities. Also due to a ruling of the German Supreme Court Cannabis – related offences have to be treated milder as long it is seen as meant for your own use and as long as there is only a small amount of it involved in your case.
You should not confuse that with that idea that there are liberal rules on all the drugs commonly used in the cities venues or elsewhere.
Do not confuse the rules for Cannabis with those for other drugs
Be aware: That fact that Cannabis is treated milder legally does not mean that it’s a good idea to simply tell the police that substances found with you are for your own use. Doing so is already confessing that you consume drugs and can lead to further measures by the authorities against you. It’s also a myth that there will be no prosecution if you admit the stuff was for yourself. Even with Cannabis there is a prosecution usually.
CBD is seen as an alternative by some people at the moment. But in many of those cases the prosecutor nonetheless investigates them and takes them of court – precisely BECAUSE the legal position in those cases is unclear.
Do use the right to remain silent – and remain silent then!
In general you have the right to remain silent and should use it until you have spoken to a lawyer! Be aware: Choosing to remain silent means that you remain silent. Somehow people often forget about this profound wisdom! Do not talk at all to the police except the phrase: „I want to talk to a lawyer“. Repeat. And repeat.
The british newspaper „The Guardian“ revealed already in 2005 that a then confidential study ordered by the British Government showed clearly that why and how the „war on drugs“ failed. The U.N. is saying so as well for quite some time now.
Nevertheless: The German Controlled Substances Act or Betäubungsmittelgesetz (BtMG) is still very strict. In general it forbids any form of drug handling like growing, producing, trafficking, importing, exporting, delivery, possession and so on.
And yes, you might read on the internet that the consumption itself is unpunished. That’s true – but do you know the legal difference between consumption and possession? And do you know how to not talk yourself involuntarily into a possession while talking to a German police officer?
So once you are confronted with an accusation because of drug offences, drug crimes, you should not take it too lightly. Especially on the area of drug law a few words too much can change the punishment enormously.
Typical drug offences, drug crimes involve:
- Cannabis – hashish, marijuana, weed
- MDMA – ecstasy
- Psilocybin – magic mushrooms
If you or a friend are facing an drug-related accusation, don’t hesitate to contact your criminal defence lawyer in Berlin.