Cannabis in Russia a risky business

Cannabis in Russia: a risky business

Cannabis in Russia. The heritage of an old dictatorship.

Cannabis in Russia. Before going ahead with this article we should know what the article 228 of Russian Crime Code says about it.

“Possession in significant scale (for marijuana it is more that 2 grams) is to be punished with either fine of even up to three years in jail (the latter is used if you got caught not the first time); large scale (more than 25 grams of marijuana): 3 to 10 years of jail with fine up to 500 thousand rubles (about €7150).”

The old mentality inherited from the hey days of the USSR continues ruloing the daily lives of Russians. Cannabis is considered a narcotic drug. It is a soft one but still continues being “drug”. How peculiar in a country where people drink vodka like crazy! It is not going to be legalized any time soon, and there is not any real movement in that direction.

Though possession has been somehow decriminalized (see above, crime is getting caught with more than two grams) for personal use: it continues being illegal although you will probably get away with a mild fine provided you get caught with only one joint. And, of course, it is highly illegal to sell and provide.

Roughly speaking, all kind of “substances” are highly prosecuted.  There is a black market for drugs but God help you if you are caught with any on you. The Russian police don’t ponce around.

There are large notices now in all international airports in Russia about bringing in certain medications such as opioid type painkillers, which must be declared. If you don’t declare them and get caught, you can expect tremendous penalties, even if you have just a few tablets or pills. You need a special prescription from your doctor declaring you must have them and a copy of the prescription and you are not allowed to bring in more than a three months quantity.

Remember cannabis is not legal in Russia. If you decide to bring non-prescription drugs, I would suggest you to choose another country.

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