Misuse of Drugs Act 1971

JurisdictionUK Non-devolved
Citation1971 c. 38


Misuse of Drugs Act 1971

1971 CHAPTER 38

An Act to make new provision with respect to dangerous or otherwise harmful drugs and related matters, and for purposes connected therewith.

[27th May 1971]

B e it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs

The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs

S-1 The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs.

1 The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs.

(1) There shall be constituted in accordance with Schedule 1 to this Act as Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (in this Act referred to as ‘the Advisory Council’); and the supplementary provisions contained in that Schedule shall have effect in relation to the Council.

(2) It shall be the duty of the Advisory Council to keep under review the situation in the United Kingdom with respect to drugs which are being or appear to them likely to be misused and of which the misuse is having or appears to them capable of having harmful effects sufficient to constitute a social problem, and to give to any one or more of the Ministers, where either the Council consider it expedient to do so or they are consulted by the Minister or Ministers in question, advice on measures (whether or not involving alteration of the law) which in the opinion of the Council ought to be taken for preventing the misuse of such drugs or dealing with social problems connected with their misuse, and in particular on measures which in the opinion of the Council ought to be taken—

( a ) for restricting the availability of such drugs or supervising the arrangements for their supply;

( b ) for enabling persons affected by the misuse of such drugs to obtain proper advice, and for securing the provision of proper facilities and services for the treatment, rehabilitation and after-care of such persons;

( c ) for promoting co-operation between the various professional and community services which in the opinion of the Council have a part to play in dealing with social problems connected with the misuse of such drugs;

( d ) for educating the public (and in particular the young) in the dangers of misusing such drugs, and for giving publicity to those dangers; and

( e ) for promoting research into, or otherwise obtaining information about, any matter which in the opinion of the Council is of relevance for the purpose of preventing the misuse of such drugs or dealing with any social problem connected with their misuse.

(3) It shall also be the duty of the Advisory Council to consider any matter relating to drug dependence or the misuse of drugs which may be referred to them by any one or more of the Ministers and to advise the Minister or Ministers in question thereon, and in particular to consider and advise the Secretary of State with respect to any communication referred by him to the Council, being a communication relating to the control of any dangerous or otherwise harmful drug made to Her Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom by any organisation or authority established by or under any treaty, convention or other agreement or arrangement to which that Government is for the time being a party.

(4) In this section ‘the Ministers’ means the Secretary of State for the Home Department, the Secretaries of State respectively concerned with health in England, Wales and Scotland, the Secretaries of State respectively concerned with education in England, Wales and Scotland, the Minister of Home Affairs for Northern Ireland, the Minister of Health and Social Services for Northern Ireland and the Minister of Education for Northern Ireland.

Controlled drugs and their classification

Controlled drugs and their classification

S-2 Controlled drugs and their classificationfor purposes of this Act.

2 Controlled drugs and their classificationfor purposes of this Act.

(1) In this Act—

( a ) the expression ‘controlled drug’ means any substance or product for the time being specified in Part I, II, or III of Schedule 2 to this Act; and

( b ) the expressions ‘Class A drug’, ‘Class B drug’ and ‘Class C drug’ mean any of the substances and products for the time being specified respectively in Part I, Part II and Part III of that Schedule;

and the provisions of Part IV of that Schedule shall have effect with respect to the meanings of expressions used in that Schedule.

(2) Her Majesty may by Order in Council make such amendments in Schedule 2 to this Act as may be requisite for the purpose of adding any substance or product to, or removing any substance or product from, any of Parts I to III of that Schedule, including amendments for securing that no substance or product is for the time being specified in a particular one of those Parts or for inserting any substance or product into any of those Parts in which no substance or product is for the time being specified.

(3) An Order in Council under this section may amend Part IV of Schedule 2 to this Act, and may do so whether or not it amends any other Part of that Schedule.

(4) An Order in Council under this section may be varied or revoked by a subsequent Order in Council thereunder.

(5) No recommendation shall be made to Her Majesty in Council to make an Order under this section unless a draft of the Order has been laid before Parliament and approved by a resolution of each House of Parliament; and the Secretary of State shall not lay a draft of such an Order before Parliament except after consultation with or on the recommendation of the Advisory Council.

Restrictions relating to controlled drugs etc.

Restrictions relating to controlled drugs etc.

S-3 Restriction of importation and exportationof controlled drugs.

3 Restriction of importation and exportationof controlled drugs.

(1) Subject to subsection (2) below—

( a ) the importation of a controlled drug; and

( b ) the exportation of a controlled drug,

are hereby prohibited.

(2) Subsection (1) above does not apply—

( a ) to the importation or exportation of a controlled drug which is for the time being excepted from paragraph ( a ) or, as the case may be, paragraph ( b ) of subsection (1) above by regulations under section 7 of this Act; or

( b ) to the importation or exportation of a controlled drug under and in accordance with the terms of a licence issued by the Secretary of State and in compliance with any conditions attached thereto.

S-4 Restriction of production and supply of controlleddrugs.

4 Restriction of production and supply of controlleddrugs.

(1) Subject to any regulations under section 7 of this Act for the time being in force, it shall not be lawful for a person—

( a ) to produce a controlled drug; or

( b ) to supply or offer to supply a controlled drug to another.

(2) Subject to section 28 of this Act, it is an offence for a person—

( a ) to produce a controlled drug in contravention of subsection (1) above; or

( b ) to be concerned in the production of such a drug in contravention of that subsection by another.

(3) Subject to section 28 of this Act, it is an offence for a person—

( a ) to supply or offer to supply a controlled drug to another in contravention of subsection (1) above; or

( b ) to be concerned in the supplying of such a drug to another in contravention of that subsection; or

( c ) to be concerned in the making to another in contravention of that subsection of an offer to supply such a drug.

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