Let’s be blunt. It’s high time we had this conversation. Marijuana consumption is a burning issue in many countries. It’s one that jointly concerns us all. We can’t just stash this away. Our future generations would be rolling their eyes if we did nothing. On paper it might seem complicated. But that’s all smoke and mirrors. Hasn’t it hit them already? Or are there greener motives that fuel marijuana legislature? We must form a grass-roots movement. Let’s weed out the BS and educate the community about doobious marijuana laws from around the world. You ready, bud?
1. UAE: U Are Extreme
Bro, I hope you don’t, but if you get busted in Dubai with even a wee bit of cannabis you can get a minimum, mandatory sentence of four years. They might even consider traces of THC in your blood or urine as “possession.” Remember, if they find any amount - no matter how minute - it will be enough for a four-year prison sentence.
2. Indonesia: You have no chill
One joint can land you in jail for four years. Importing cannabis can get you imprisoned for anywhere between 5 and 15 years. In an extreme case, an Australian was caught importing 4.5 KG of the plant to Indonesia and sentenced to death. Thankfully, her sentence was reduced to 20 years. Still, bummer.
3. Malaysia: Where planting a seed gets you jailed for life
As bizarre as it sounds, it’s true. Planting a cannabis seed can land you in prison for life. Possession of more than 50 grams can get you at least 5 years in jail and a fine of more than 4 lakh Rupees (6,500 USD). The possession of a mere 200 grams carries a mandatory death by hanging penalty.
4. Philippines: A dozen years in jail, over a double doob
If you’re caught smoking up for the first time in the Philippines, they send you to a minimum of 6 months in rehab. But if they catch you puffing again, it could be up to 12 years in jail. That escalated pretty quickly.
5. Japan: Go home, you’re stoned
If you’re Japanese, being caught with a doobie gets you five years in prison with hard labour. Thankfully, if you’re a foreigner, it’s unlikely that you’ll be jailed. Worst case scenario, you’ll be deported and never get to go back.
6. Thailand: You do NOT want to get caught with weed in Thailand
More than anywhere else in the world, this can get you into a sticky situation in Thailand. Because not only is it illegal, but the local law enforcement also has a bad reputation of using shady tricks to squeeze money from tourists’ pockets. There have been alleged extrajudicial killings linked to some of these cases.
7. China: Where executing drug offenders is an annual spectacle
This one’s difficult to put a number on, because the Chinese Government doesn’t make such records public. Amnesty International has estimated that 500 people are executed annually in connection to drug offences. This can include anything from cannabis to meth. Weirder still, the death penalties are carried out in an annual frenzy on UN’s International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking.
8. Saudi Arabia: Don’t get stoned here
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has a sort of three strikes rule. Strike 1: you go to jail for 6 months; Strike 2: jail for 7 years; Strike 3: death.
9. Singapore: Smoke and you’re broke
With a penalty of a whooping 8.25 Lakh Rupees ($13,000) or 10 years in jail, getting caught in Singapore won’t kill you. But it sure will burn a big hole in your pocket.
Seriously, the world needs to chill.