Issue 8 (2017)


Authors: Mariam Bezhanishvili

Abstract: This article discusses the legitimacy of criminalizing drug consumption from the perspective of criminal law principles. It supports the idea of decriminalizing consumption of drugs, as far as this action does not reach the threshold of extraordinary dangerous social activity, necessary for certain action to qualify as crime. This standard is not met predominantly because drug addicts or mere consumers do not violate any legal interest of other persons or society that can be object of criminal law protection. The act of drug consumption is directed solely against the consumer itself, hence, falls short to be determined as action threatening legal interests of others. The abstract danger of possible commission of other crimes (mainly ecomonic or transport related) in the future is not suffi cient for establishing necessary preconditions of criminal liability, such as: action or danger that is directed to inducing instant results, causality between drug consumption and hypothetical commission of crime in the future, existence of simultaneous intention. Establishment of criminal liability for drug consumption cannot be justifi ed by violation of moral rules of society or by serving a symbolic meaning either. The Fighting against drug consumption through criminal justice is further inappropriate due to the aims of criminal sanctions – restoration of justice, prevention of crime and resocialization of offender cannot be achieved by holding drug addict, who needs nothing more than appropriate treatment.

Key Words: Decriminalization, Policy, Sanctions