Sara Ibrahim Advocates & Legal Consultants


What you should know about Narcotic Laws of UAE

The human race is getting in danger due to the continuous usage of drugs and other narcotic substances which are forbidden in most countries. But what makes the situation more worst is the tainted governmental laws. Nothing much has changed despite the drug regulations which have been passed on through ages. 

When we look at the perspective of the UAE government on this issue, the dilemma that arises is that whether it is sound to actually decriminalize it. In the novel amendment, i.e. the federal law no.8 of 2016, a past law of Federal Law Number 14 of 1995 have considerably got changed in order to take measures against the Narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances. The amendments are therefore explained below along with the explanation to the thinking psychology of the government which led to issuance of such laws as reviewed by Top Criminal Lawyers of Dubai.

The Highlighted Amendments! 

Under these amendments, a trend has been seen whereby the government has introduced a lesser punishment for the use of illegal drugs and not only this, it has even introduced more options for the accused in order to serve his punishment. The jail sentence for such a crime has been reduced from four years to two years. Further, a power has been given to the attorney general through which he can send the accused to a rehabilitation center after taking advise from the police and the public prosecutor. The punishment will be based on number of times the accused has committed an offense. If the accused is found guilty for the first time, then he will be given option of rehabilitation or the community service along with the fine of maximum AED10,000, and if the offender has committed the crime more than once, then in that case, he will be sentenced to jail along with the fine.

The idea behind relaxing the punishments is that the UAE government seeks to help those who are disturbed and sorting to drugs usage as their only solution out of the problems they are facing in life. It is also provided in the new amended law that if the offender is handed over to the police or the public prosecutor or the rehabilitation center by the family members himself, then he will not be executed. The earlier law did not provided for the same. He will be released from the rehabilitation center when the center will be of the opinion that he has successfully transformed. Moreover, now the stay duration in the rehabilitation center has also been reduced. Earlier it was 3 years which is now reduced to two years.

The approach that the UAE has followed in dealing with drug related crimes are to consider the health aspect of the accused first. This change by the UAE government has lead to a successful establishment of the law and order by making remarkable changes in the legal system. It is a noteworthy reformation, where the UAE courts now, no more rely on the previous presidents and air tight containers of the legislation, rather, they weigh the facts of each and every case and give the judgment accordingly, unlike the common law.

The alternatives that are provided in the new amendment are not yet popular among the masses. As a result, Dubai Police is considerably working for spreading the awareness of the same. It will eventually lead to termination of fear that is prevailing among the masses for such abuse of the Narcotic drugs by the ways of Nationwide campaigns, such as the International Day against drug abuse and illicit trafficking.

Some other amendments are, under article 43 it is provided that the accused will not be charged if he will be passing the treatment program. Article 44 provides with the further controlling of these Narcotic Drugs, by punishing the publications promoting the use of such drugs by the means of fine amounting to AED50,000. It even provides for the punishment to the person who tries to intoxicate someone else through ways of food and drink. Under section 46 such person will be punished with imprisonment of at least 5 years. In the presence of the mala fide intent of such person, he will have to serve in jail for at least 7 years and if the accused will undertake other punishable activities after intoxicating the person, then he will be punished with life imprisonment. Not only this, if such act of the accused leads to the death of the victim, them he will be punished with death penalty. The same provision, also holds a person liable, if he transfers the illegal drugs to another who is not aware of the fact that such drugs are illegal. Next, article 59 provides for the continuous examination of the people who will be taking the defense of article 43. Such person will have to follow the rules laid down by the minister of Interior, failing which he will be punished for imprisonment of 1 year. If there will be a refusal on the part of such person to undertake examination, then also he will be punished for 2 years of imprisonment and a fine of not less than 10,000. Article 61 of the amended law provides power to the police officer to use the means of force in order to ensure the obeying of the law.

Book an appointment with our legal experts & best lawyers in Dubai.​