The Government says it has no plans to wipe past cannabis-related convictions from New Zealanders’ criminal records if recreational use of the plant becomes legal.
Minister for Justice Andrew Little told Stuff on Wednesday the Government had “no intention” of expunging any person’s past cannabis convictions.
Those currently in jail for cannabis-related charges “will serve out the remainder of their sentence”, Little said.
But drug reform advocates argue that if Kiwis vote a majority ‘Yes’ on the Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill and it’s brought into law, people should not continue being punished for something that will no longer be a crime.
New Zealand Drug Foundation director Ross Bell is urging the Government to consider the option in the future.