Cannabis lobby writes to EU’s von der Leyen about CBD arrestsPosted by On


A local cannabis-focused lobby group has taken its concerns about police wrongfully prosecuting CBD users to Europe.

In a letter to European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, Releaf noted that people were being arrested in multiple member states for having imported CBD cannabis – despite the Commission having said in 2021 that CBD qualifies as a form of novel food.

“The criminalisation of people obtaining a registered product manufactured within the EU and following EU health and safety regulations is not proportionate to the potential severity of the offence,” the advocacy group told von der Leyen.

Activists want the EU Commission to issue a recommendation to member states to revoke criminal consequences for anyone possessing, purchasing, selling or travelling with CBD or hemp-based products within the Schengen area.

CBD, or cannabidiol, is the second most common compound in cannabis after THC. While THC is what gives cannabis its psychoactive effect, or ‘high’, CBD has no psychoactive properties. It is often used for its medicinal properties. 

CBD cannabis looks identical to its THC equivalent. 

Releaf’s letter, which was endorsed by a number of academics across Europe as well as local activist group Moviment Graffitti, cites Malta, Spain, Ireland and Italy as member states where such arrests have taken place.

Locally, the most high-profile such case concerns the arrest of doctor Andrew Agius, who was arrested and charged with importing cannabis…

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