The state insisted on incriminating a disabled person in the cultivation of cannabis

The Magistrate's Court in Rehovot acquitted the defendant after determining that his actions were "devious," in light of the limited amount of cannabis and the fact that he had a license for medical cannabis, and in view of the change in cannabis enforcement policy in self-consumption.

By: Rotem Tubul, Pascadine

Vice-President of the Magistrate's Court in Rehovot, Judge Efrat Fink, Was acquitted of a charge of possession of drugs for his own use, after a year ago a small sapling of cannabis weighing about 5 was seized at home.

Judge Efrat Fink
Judge Efrat Fink, of the Rishon Letzion Magistrate's Court (Courtesy of the Courts Website)

The judge accepted the position of the defendant and his attorney, Adv. Doron Stern, who argued for the defense of "Zuti Devarim". The intention is that even if the offense was committed, it is a matter so minor that it is impossible to conduct a criminal proceeding against him and to accuse the perpetrator of criminal liability in light of the lack of public interest.

In this context, the defendant claimed that this is a very small amount of cannabis that he raised in a box in a non-sophisticated and unprofessional manner, and held it for personal consumption.

Moreover, it is also alleged that the defendant has a license to receive and consume medical cannabis weighing 50 grams, the defendant suffers disability at the rate of 85%, and receives a National Insurance Allowance.

In addition, it was argued that in light of a pending bill regarding cannabis self-consumption, such offenses are likely to become finable offenses, and indictments will no longer be filed under similar circumstances.

On the other hand, lawyers for the state (Shirley Barzilai, Adv. Coral Bar) insisted that the defendant, who raised cannabis despite the license to receive medical cannabis, should be convicted. The state further argued that the new policy of the Minister of Internal Security and the bill are not relevant to the cultivation of drugs, even if only for personal consumption.

In general, Judge Fink made it clear In the judgment That "the restriction of de minimis depends on the existence of the cumulative conditions detailed therein, that is, the nature of the act, its circumstances, its results and the public interest indicate that the act is of little value."

In view of the small amount of cannabis, the judge mentioned that the cannabis weight raised by the defendant did not exceed the amount of cannabis that he needed for the license, and in fact allowed him to consume cannabis in much greater quantity.

The main controversy dealt with the issue of public interest and the definition of the act as a matter of value, namely, whether it was possible to define an increase and possession of 5 cannabis caused by a defendant who had a license to hold cannabis as a minor act.

In this regard, the judge noted that changes in the public interest in holding cannabis for personal consumption have undergone changes in recent years, reflected in the change in the enforcement policy. As part of this policy, the perception of the level of criminality in possession of cannabis has changed for personal consumption, for example, by punitive penalties instead of criminal prosecution, and in the bill on the subject.

In view of this change, even if it does not relate to the growth of cannabis, and in light of the unique circumstances of the case in question, the judge reached the conclusion that, "in the case in question, there is a reservation of de minimis. The restriction is based on the combination of the small quantity of the drug in a germ state, the fact that the defendant has a license to consume drugs, and the change in enforcement policy and the perception of the public interest. "

The writer, attorney Rotem Tubul, Will not be represented in the case.

Cannabis fines

(Starting with 1 in April 2019)

Based on a figure revealed by Minister Erdan. Police refuse to reveal official figureDetails here)

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