Ganja possession clogging up the system

| 30/01/2015 | 39 Comments

(CNS): The commissioner of police has said that he wants to see the decriminalisation of the consumption and personal possession of small amounts of ganja because it is clogging up the system, and that as Jamaica begins moves to not only legalise its use for medicinal, therapeutic and religious purposes but also to license production, this will impact Cayman. CoP David Baines said the criminal justice system in the Cayman Islands is criminalising people for using the drug and diverting resources from the serious dealing.

Speaking to the media following a meeting in West Bay on Monday evening, Baines said there was no evidence that the local gangs involved in the recent violence are tied to major drug trafficking and the cocaine trade.

But he said there was no doubt that the canoes from Jamaica bringing in the ganja are also bringing in the firearms being used in the violence. Baines said that as Jamaica moves towards a legalised regime for ganja production, it is likely to be less concerned about the trafficking of the drug and their border control and enforcement will drop. He said this will have a direct impact on Cayman’s ability to tackle the major trafficking, especially when the system is focused on low-level consumption and use.

The police boss also revealed that there is no room in local legislation for investigators and prosecutors to use plea bargaining with low-level users or dealers to give up the major dealers and it is some time since the authorities brought charges against traffickers.

Baines said it was time to allow officers to issue warnings or ticketed fines to people regarding consumption and low-level possession to free up the system and stop young people from carrying criminal records for ganja use. He said he did not support the full legalisation of the drug’s use, but practically, the enforcement of the current strict laws was clogging up the system.

He said there was no evidence that the gang violence in Cayman was not linked to drug turf wars or deals, and that while some of the known gang members may use and deal some ganja, the rivalry had nothing to do with drug trafficking.

Baines said the major money in the drug trade was not made in ganja but cocaine and there was little evidence at all of any of the traffickers in that drug being connected to the gangs in West Bay responsible for the latest street violence.

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Comments (39)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    ahh yes legalize something because the rules are not being followed This is why we have underage drinking, incest, rape, corruption etc ruining society in cayman

  2. Anonymous says:

    Wow! What does this mean for all that have been arrested, went to court, paid fines, lost employment, had a bad police record and so many other things happen to them because they were in possession of one small spliff?

  3. Anonymous says:

    the ganja boats that has the ammo and guns stashed in the bales of ganja must be jumping with joy…guns and ammo aren’t made here in Cayman; they arrive on the ganja canoes and apparently most comments on here seem to be okay with this…

  4. Jeffrey says:

    It’s about time!!!! Now… how do we get our legislators on board

  5. Godmind says:

    Finally, these people have come to their senses, and I am not insulting the police for doing their jobs, but this needs to happen, from my own experience and evaluated experiences, The only bad thing with Marijuana is being caught with it, other than that, evidence shows that it harms you in no way possible, unlike cigarettes or alcohol which causes death among the young and the old, marijuana has been illegal for too long and for no such reason, I am currently attending court for personal possession of marijuana, and consumption of marijuana, and I am 16 years old, I know I am underage and shouldn’t be smoking overall, but hey, I did it, and I enjoyed it, it cured my asthma, and it treats my ADHD, but scratch that, let me get to the point… the Government should not and I repeat should not be able to choose what plants we want to possess and or consume, especially if its medicinal properties exceeds the horrible medicine we take today, I mean, its natural, it can be grown, and can be put to good use, Half of the people voting against marijuana, know nothing of what it can do, and haven’t even researched ANYTHING about it, I am just here to say that i fully support Marijuana and it’s medical uses, and it should be legalized for Spiritual, Medicinal, and Recreational purposes. Thank you for reading, and thank YOU Mr Baines.

  6. Anonymous says:

    There will now be more foreigners seeking ways to live on our Island… BAD IDEA

  7. Anonymous says:

    Baines aint that bad after all.

  8. Mr Yes says:

    Good thinking, ive had refusing a urine specimen on my record for 5 bloody years! Thank God my workplace still hired me. It will probably take someone getting cured with cancer for these hard head government officials to realise it needs to be decriminalized!

  9. Panwix says:

    Decriminalization would be a step in the right direction. Also allowing the personal cultivation of the plant in a restricted scale would take the power out of the importers as it would become unprofitable to run canoes from jamaica. The criminal element would suffer and would empower the public against them.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Legalise Cultivation for Natives only!!!! At least you don’t have to worry about guns being illegally trafficked from Jamaica!

  11. Freddy says:

    Well there you go. Now it comes out. Last year I said that the COP stated that drugs and drug enforcement WAS NOT a priority for him. There is the proof. Cayman is finished. We will go the way everyone else has for the sake of everyone else.
    I ain’t no Christian nut but I am starting to believe that the Bible ain’t lying. These are the end of days. Evil has inundated everything and the criminals have overrun the justice system.
    Just like these so called Human Rights. It protects the criminals who have stopped me from enjoying my Human Rights in order that their Human Rights are protected. And sorry but anything else from anyone is pure rubbish, my opinion. Tough luck. Next it will be that convicts can get a gun license because we infringing on their Human Rights because we being biased.

  12. Y says:

    VERY BOLD AND WISE WORDS FROM THE COMMISSIONER…. THIS DOESNT MEAN HE SHOULD BE ALLOWED TO STAY. NONETHELESS… HIS OBSERVANT WORDS OF TRUTH WILL HOPEFULLY CREATE SOME MUCH NEEDED NATIONAL DEBATE ON THE MATTER.

  13. Anonymous says:

    legalize cultivation too! It will… create jobs, stop trafficking, empty the prison, clear out the court rooms, generate revenue for govt, boost tourism, improve the economy and free up the herb!

  14. Anonymous says:

    While I agree with the general concept of this idea, I disagree with the point about “stopping young people from carrying criminal records” a law shouldn’t be removed because people can’t follow it. That’s just saying “well, because you won’t obey it, you can have your way” police shouldnt feel “bad” for catching people with ganja because they’ll have a criminal record. They were well aware of the law and the consequences and did it anyway. They have only themselves to blame. (and this is coming from a “young person”)

    • Anonymous says:

      Guess Martin Luther King should not have stood up for blacks to vote in the 60’s then, cause it was illegal right? dont be young and ignorant, be young and informed. Ganja use being a crime helps NO ONE

      • Anonymous says:

        Shame on you! A race be oppressed should not draw a parell to a group of people wasting time getting high. It is this deluded thinking that has the United States bordering race riots like that of the era of the great Dr. King. King never eluded entitlement without discipline and hard work. He was fighting a great cause. Do not tarnish the fights history with drug abuse being in anyway similar.

        • Anonymous says:

          I guess using medicine to fight cancer, treat pain and appetite loss, and even cure chronic seizures now makes you a dirty drug abuser.

    • OpenMinded says:

      The misuse of drugs law within the Cayman Islands is absolutely lazy for the most part in the sense that someone caught with even a nanogram of marijuana can be imprisoned. Clearly marijuana use cannot be stopped, therefore just regulate and tax the use and sale of it.

      Government officials should educate themselves on this topic.

    • Anonymous says:

      The point is that weed shouldn’t be illegal in the first place. It’s harmless and is actually proven to be medically beneficial. People in Cayman are uneducated in the facts about weed and have the wrong opinion about it.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Well Commissioner Baines seems enlightened about at least one thing! Perhaps he should review RCIPS’ community policing techniques with similar enlightenment and start working towards positive results.

  16. Anonymous says:

    I think decriminalisation of marijuana is a step in right direction for curbing violence, and may decrease young people feeling they are ‘gangsters’ because they’re willing to break the law to smoke and if less harassment by police then many might get back on track before going to jail and never making a positive change.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Bainsy, mi nah lie. I’m starting to like you a little….just a lil.

    • Fafa says:

      Pure weed heads

      • Anonymous says:

        Come on Fafa,don’t be a fart head,do your home work before making negative comments.then again you sound like my grumpy old uncle.”weed head” comments he use to make.stop living in the past.

      • Anonymous says:

        I’m not a weed head. I don’t even smoke. I still know that people deserve the freedom to smoke this plant if that is how they want to relax. It makes no sense to send a cop with a gun to kidnap someone, lock them up, and give them a record that makes it hard to find work, while costing Cayman valuable resources and money all because they wanted to smoke a spliff and relax. There are also medicinal benefits associated with cannabis and people should be able to medicate. Remember in the US in the twenties they outlawed alcohol and gang violence skyrocketed. They legalized it and violence decreased.

  18. Caymans List says:

    Legalize it and the illegal trafficking with stop..

    • Hiding says:

      Legalize, tax, and control.
      If the politicians have a problem with morality, then they should add up the potential tax dollars; that should take care of their so called morals.

  19. Anonymous says:

    While it is pointless to imprison a person for a splif,he sounds clueless that major money is not profited trafficking ganja and that our misguided youth is not being murdered due to gangs trafficking ganja.

    • Drifting Stick says:

      I completely disagree with you. Provide evidence and we’ll talk

    • Anonymous says:

      The majority of the trafficking and accompanying arms now come from cocaine and ecstasy; it is far more profitable than marijuana and the popularity among the “elitist” local class and tourists has virtually exploded over the past 3 -5 years.

      • Anonymous says:

        Agreed that there are higher profits E and Cocaine you cannot ignore the fact that ganja and smuggling of it and the resale on our streets has fueled the violence we see today. The profits are real and one only has to look at the Mexicans selling and transporting ganja. They are involved with Meth and Cocaine for sure but Ganja is part of their model to make money. Unless you decriminalize ganja full stop, the violence from the smuggling will continue to overshadow any good intention and efforts put forth to midigate a workable solution to allowing our youth to light up but at the same time avoid any criminality associated with it. In any case this is a lame duck approach and more excuses as to why he can’t get a hold of crime. The measure of a true leader is their ability to manage a problem and come out on top, not to play politics. I cannot believe that he would offer the idea that because we have so many ganja users his charge is focusing on consumption rather then serious crime. With the amount in his charge and our small population it appears that Cayman is over ran by criminals or just one of the poorest Police Services in the free world. I am guessing the later. Trying to score points with locals will not overshadow the fiasco of the murdering thug he employed to carry a firearm on the streets and kept him on as a sworn constable with a murder charge waiting in the wings.

  20. Anonymous says:

    YESSSSS!!!!!! Finally someone has sense and balls to step up and say this!!!

  21. Anonymous says:

    This probably the smartest thing that came out of Baines mouth since he’s been hired!!

  22. Anonymous says:

    Good 1

  23. Anonymous says:

    In 2002, the UK decriminalised ganja cigar. It is not cost effective to arrest a person who has been caught smoking or has consumed ganja. From the point of arrest to disposal in court, for the person to be fined $100.00, makes no sense at all.

  24. Anonymous says:

    Hallelujah!

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