The reason that an individual would be charged with production instead of cultivation is because production is classed as a ‘trafficking’ offence, which allows the authorities to order a POCA (Proceeds of Crime Act) hearing.
POCA provides the courts with scope to confiscate the proceeds of a crime where a defendant is shown to have benefited from their criminal conduct.
Penalties available for cultivation of cannabis
Offence Range: Discharge – 10 years’ imprisonment.
The severity of the penalty applied in relation to cultivation of cannabis will depend on the individual circumstances of the case. The prosecution consider the size of the operation, the individual’s role in said operation & certain mitigating factors. The Sentencing Guidelines for Drug Offences outlines the range of sentences available for cultivation of cannabis cases:
There is more information on this issue in sentencing for drug offences.
The ACMD report, ‘Cannabis: Classification and Public Health’, published in May 2008, concluded that “after a most careful scrutiny of the totality of the available evidence, the majority of the Council’s members consider – based on its harmfulness to individuals and society – that cannabis should remain a Class C substance”. The Council emphasised that in their opinion, the use of cannabis was “a significant public health issue” which could “unquestionably cause harm to individuals and society”, but advised that public health strategies designed to minimise cannabis use would be far more effective than reclassification or criminal justice measures.
Gordon Brown and tightening the law on Cannabis
After ten years of liberalising attitudes towards cannabis, in 2007, shortly after he became Prime Minister, Gordon Brown signalled that he would consider reclassifying cannabis as a Class B drug.
Cannabis was first made illegal in the UK in 1928.
The history of UK cannabis law
Having legalized cannabis for medicinal purposes in 2001, Canada became the first whole G7 nation to legalise the recreational use of the drug in October 2018.
Moreover, they argue that selling marijuana in licensed shops would be a better way to regulate the drug and control the contents of the THC ingredient that people consume.
In what countries is cannabis use legal?
Cannabis was reclassified as a Class B Drug by Gordon Brown’s government in 2008.
Ministers appeared sympathetic to evidence that cannabis was getting stronger, due to the greater availability of skunk, and the reported links between cannabis use and mental illness.