Sun | Sep 25, 2016

14,000 fewer persons arrested on ganja changes since changes to law – Bunting

Published:Tuesday | January 26, 2016 | 9:45 AM
National Security Minister Peter Bunting pointed out that before the changes to the Dangerous Drug Act, persons criminalised for ganja possession could not get a United States visa, for example, or get a job.

National Security Minister Peter Bunting says the police have arrested 14,000 fewer persons for possession of marijuana.

The announcement comes months after the government enacted changes to the Dangerous Drug Act which decriminalised possession of small quantities of marijuana.

He says the decrease in the number of arrests for drug possession means 14,000 fewer persons were consigned to the fringes of the economy.

Bunting pointed out that before the changes, persons criminalised for ganja possession could not get a United States visa, for example, or get a job.

Meanwhile, the security minister says since the amendments to the Dangerous Drugs Act "hundreds of thousands" of persons have had their criminal records expunged.

In addition, he says the police have eliminated the use of curfews as a crime fighting tool.

He says up to 7,000 curfews used to be done annually.

However, he said he has not signed any in recent times.

Bunting made the disclosure yesterday while addressing a forum organised by the Caribbean Policy Research Institute (CaPRI).