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Great Britain

In the first half of 20 th century doctors in the UK were legally permitted to prescribe narcotics (cannabis, cocaine and morphine among others) to addicts, while the amount of drug users was relatively low during that time. In 1964, the government started adopting first of the series of laws prohibiting drug possession even for personal use. According to some estimates, the UK today has the highest level of drug addiction in Europe. The number of heroin users grew from approximately 5,000 people in 1957 in whole country to more than 280,000 addicts registered in 2007 in England alone.

As for cannabis, the herb is currently classified as B class drug in the three-class system according to the level of their harmful effects (penalties are based on the class), even though it had been reclassified as a class C drug (least harmful) from 2004 to 2009. Unfortunately the conservative government moved it back to group B in 2010, which means that any possession, handling and distribution of the drug are illegal since then. On the other hand it is true that the police is approaching offenders in a more liberal way in recent years, and usually issues only a fine or warning for possession of small amount of cannabis for personal use.

Velká Británie