Drugs and Public Health
Crimes Involving Drugs
Our criminal lawyers are specialists in drug-related crimes in Barcelona and throughout Spain.
Drug-related crimes fall under crimes against Public Health. These crimes can take different forms, such as the growth, preparation, trafficking, promotion or illegal possession of toxic drugs, narcotics and psychotropic substances.
Drug crimes specifically related to the trafficking of drugs are separated into three categories:
Trafficking of drug precursors (chemicals used for medicine production, which can also be misused for the manufacture of drugs, including methamphetamines, heroin or cocaine).
Preparatory acts: conspiracy, proposition and provocation.
The trafficking, growth and processing of toxic drugs, narcotics and psychotropic substances or promotion of any other means of illegal consumption.
Our lawyers note that the most basic drug-related crime for which people seek legal advice, is the trafficking, growth and processing of toxic drugs, narcotics and psychotropic substances. Narcotics are a class of drugs, commonly defined as those which make you want to sleep and numb pain (eg. Heroin or cocaine). Psychotropic or psychoactive substances are named this way due to their effects as drugs which affect mental processes. Many drugs can fall into this category as it is an open term. Our lawyers provide advice regarding crimes including drug possession, participation and preparation for drug trafficking, which are also considered as part of this crime.
This includes sending money to obtain drugs which you will then sell on, the sale of tools to aid drug consumption and selling the ingredients used to produce drugs. Outside of this type of crime is the possession of drugs for personal use and self-consumption, however these are still punishable offences. Our Spanish lawyers will be able to advise you should you have a similar case. The trafficking of drugs refers to when drugs are traded for money. The regulations against drug trafficking focus on the mobility, spread and dispersal of drugs. Any means of introducing the drugs onto the market is considered illegal. This includes: the purchase, sale, transportation, trade, posting and the retail of drugs on a small scale.
The legality of drug possession depends on whether the holder has the aim of promoting or initiating drug use, or whether they are for personal or commercial use. In our lawyer’s experience, we have seen that the availability of these drugs can be seen as more important than the subject’s possession of substances (due to the fact that many drug traffickers on a large scale do not have direct contact with the drugs). The law states that the purity of the drugs, their handling, whether the possessor is holding substantial quantities of money or tools used to take drugs, if the drugs were hidden, the attitude of the possessor towards the police and whether the person is drug-dependent are factors considered by legal officials when prosecuting.
The quantity of drugs which a person can possess without being punished is usually equivalent to the minimum psychoactive dose. Our lawyers note that in some rulings we have seen in Spain, the court has set out the following quantities as the minimum doses: cocaine, 50 milligrams; marijuana, 10 milligrams; heroin, 66 milligrams; LSD, 20 micrograms; MDMA, 20 milligrams; and morphine, 2 milligrams.
The punishment for drug-related crimes depends on the type of drug involved and whether they carry a serious health risk. For trafficking of a drug which seriously affects the user’s health, our lawyers have seen sentences of between 3 to 6 years and a fine. Drugs in this category include: heroin, speed, MDMA, MDA, MDEA, LSD, methadone… However, there could be attenuating circumstances, which are considered and include the personal circumstances of the offender. Our lawyers have seen these reduce the sentences received by offenders.
For substances which cause less severe danger to public health, sentences would fall between 1 and 3 years and a fine. Our legal experts understand that Marijuana and Rohypnol are both in this class.
Sentences vary from case to case, so it is important to seek the help of an experienced lawyer in Spain to provide you with the most relevant and up to date advice.
The punishments mentioned previously refer to the basic type of crime, but aggravated circumstances can also be present which can increase the punishment or result in the application of articles with a more severe sentence. Factors may include: belonging to a criminal organization, giving drugs to minors or possessing a high amount of drugs (of significant importance), amongst other cases.
There are also articles which reduce the punishments, such as article 373, referring to behaviour such as conspiration.
More dangerous drugs tend to carry longer sentences and more hefty fines.
Should you need further information, or legal advice with regards to drug-related crimes, please do not hesitate to contact our lawyers. You can contact us by using the contact form below, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or by telephoning +34 93 514 39 97 .
Disclaimer: This article is not concrete advice, for up to date legal advice which is relevant for your case please contact our lawyers.