Thursday 19 February 2015

Sentencing Guidelines for Importation of Cannabis a Class B Drug in the UK

Sentencing Guidelines for Importation of Cannabis a Class B Drug in the UK

This is a basic sentencing guideline for if you are caught importing cannabis and find yourself having to appear in front of a UK court.

Cannabis is otherwise known as marijuana, hashish, puff, weed, skunk, sensimelia, pot, soap, ganja and many more - all Class B Drugs Category.

Step 1 - Determine the offender's role then the category of harm.

The offender's role

Leading role: Plays a leading position in organizing production, links to and influence on others, substantial financial gain uses fake business and abuses position of trust.

Significant role: Person Involved in operations at management level by pressure, intimidation or reward and motivated by finance with some awareness of the commercial scale.

Lesser role: Person performs limited functions, engaged by pressure or intimidation, through naivety, no influence on others and very little awareness of commercial scale.

The category of harm for Cannabis

Category 1 - 200kg Cannabis
Category 2 - 40kg Cannabis
Category 3 - 6kg Cannabis
Category 4 - 100 grams Cannabis

Step 2 - sentencing range guidelines for Cannabis Class B

Category 1

Leading role: Starting Point: 8 yrs Category Range: 7-10 yrs

Significant role: Starting Point: 5 yrs Category Range: 5-7 yrs

Lesser role: Starting Point: 4 yrs Category Range: 2-5 yrs

Category 2

Leading role: Starting Point: 6 yrs Category Range: 4-6 yrs

Significant role: Starting Point: 4 yrs Category Range: 2-5 yrs

Lesser role: Starting Point: 2 yrs Category Range: 18m-3 yrs

Category 3

Leading role: Starting Point: 4 yrs Category Range: 2 yrs 6m-5 yrs

Significant role: Starting Point: 2 yrs Category Range: 18m-3 yrs

Lesser role: Starting Point: 1 yr Category Range: 12w-18m

Category 4

Where the quantity falls below the indicative amount set out for category 4 above, 1st identify the role for the importation offense, then refer to the starting point and ranges for possession or supply offenses depending on intent.

Aggravating Features – Will increase your Sentence if applicable

At this point the prosecution will look at facts surrounding your case and increase your sentence if any of the following conditions apply.

Aggravating factors including previous convictions, use of under age 18 people in your operation, crime committed within the vicinity of a school, offence committed on bail, attempts to conceal or dispose of evidence, presence of minors, presence of weapons, high purity, failure to comply with current court orders and community impact will all be looked at so try to make sure as little of these apply as possible.

Mitigating Features – Will decrease your sentence if applicable

Mitigating features will be looked at to determine if you are of good character and there were circumstances to which you should receive credit.

This will including looking at if there is evidence of involvement due to pressure or naivety, supply of a drug you are addicted to helps,  Mistaken involvement in own actions, weather it is an isolated incident (will not happen again), Low purity, no previous convictions or nothing relevant, offenders vulnerability, remorse for your offence, good character such as owning a business or showing good character in court, steps taken to change (help with addiction), lack of maturity (if you are under 18), mental disorder or learning disability and if you are the sole or primary carer looking after someone else.

Step 3

Consider factors which indicate a reduction such as assistance to the prosecution

Step 4

Reduction for guilty plea

Step 5

Increase if more than one offense or the offender is already serving.

Step 6

Confiscation and ancillary orders; including POCA, forfeiture orders and destruction orders

Step 7

Reasons explanation for sentence – extenuating circumstances count

Step 8

consider time spent on remand in custody or bail.

Ancillary Orders


Forfeiture orders

Destruction Confiscation orders

Travel restriction orders. Judge's have a wide discretion which has to be exercised carefully and has to be proportional R v. Mee 2004 Crim L R 487 and section 33 CJ and Police Act 2001


If drugs imported by car or lorry a driving ban may be considered; section 146 or 147 of the Power of Criminal Court (Sentencing) Act 2000


  1. Bruv I was caught last year comin back from Spannabis in march. I had some tight amnesia cherry crazy cheap in spain paid 200 euro for over 50 g's. wrapped that shit tight and put it in da my main case. got on the plane fine but heathrow airport feds jacked me looking for cigarettes they found my weed and i was bang up.

    sent me to brentford magistrates court cost £200 and 100 hours community service.

  2. I was just caught growing 18 plants in a tent with 2 lights at around 7 weeks flowering.

    Had some cash converscated but nothing much in the way of dealing evidence.

    What do you reckon court sentence will be?


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