In Spain, cannabis is included in the restricted plants list due to its harmful potential (1). To sale and cultivate cannabis is also forbidden (Article 368 PC). Nevertheless, cultivation for research, teaching and therapeutic purposes is allowed (2). Self-consumption is not punishable by law because the consumer is considered a sick person nor a criminal. Also possession prior to consumption is not unlawful, unless such consumption or possession is on the public via (street). The cannabis’seeds are not subject to audit and therefore to buy or selling them is legal.
Regarding the therapeutic use of cannabis, the Spanish authorities recognize the benefits of their effects for some diseases. The 2007 Report of Plan Nacional sobre Drogas, and institution that depends on the Ministry of Health, said that “there is scientific evidence for therapeutic use in the case of nausea and vomiting secondary to chemotherapy, loss of appetite in AIDS and terminal cancer and the treatment of neuropathic pain in multiple sclerosis.”
Jurisprudence based on judicial rulings (STS of December 12 1990 and January 17 1994) says that cultivation for self-consumption it is not a crime, since only cultivations for criminal purposes is a crime and self-consumption it is not it itself a crime (cannabis and its derivatives in the Spanish Criminal Law, Sergio Alvarez Herrero). Although there are frequent arrests because of domestic small plantations of marijuana, most of them are acquitted when self-consumption purposes have been demonstrated (LaVerdad.es 4-10-2008). The Spanish Ministry of Health confirms it in hisReport on Cannabis 2006 which states that “the Criminal Code does not consider a crime, in any case, consumption, possession for self-consumption and cultivation of cannabis whenever it is for self-use. There are also favourable rulings on the so-called “collective culture”, that is, harvests are shared between members of the same With regard to Cannabis Social Clubs, groups of farmers, who share their cannabis in a closed circle of members the legal situation is still unclear. While there have been several initiatives to regulate the situation in autonomous communities (Basque Country, Balearic Islands, Catalonia), members of the collective farming FAC-Andalucía (South Canal, 03.20.2014) have been procecuted and members of Pannagh have been threatened by up to 22 years in prison.
Usually, Court decisions don’t get deeper on the therapeutic purposes and they ruling that there is no crime if the crop is for self-consumption. Two precedents were notorious: in 1999 an Austrian citizen with cancer was acquitted by a criminal court of Barcelona’s drug trafficking despite his arrest with two kilos of hashish at the airport in Barcelona. The defendant argued that he consumed the drug for therapeutic purposes. More recently, in 2006, a judge in Alicante acquitted a psychotherapist who cultivated 258 marijuana plants, weighing 3.5 kilos. The judge considered that there was enough evidence to show that marihuana helps the psychotherapist to treat the migraines so he made an inquiry to investigate the varieties.” In 2007 the head of the Criminal Justice 1 of Jaen, Jose Antonio Luccini, acquiited Mogon, a neighbor of 33 that was surprised in his marijuana plantation of more than 5.3 kilos by the police. The defence argued that marihuana was for self-consumption to treat a insupportable pain from irritable bowel disease and the Judge acquitted the neighbour although the amount “far exceeded the what may be used for this purpose.” Because the defendant voluntarily went in to the marihuana plantation judge considered that this demonstrated “good faith improper from who intended to smuggle.”
In recent decades the Spanish main source of illegal cannabis (hashish from near by Morocco) has been moved by the cultivation for self-consumption. In the context of a major social movement for legal marihuana, paraphernalia grow shops are numerous, as well as associations of farmersclaiming for a legal regulation that governs them and avoid the existing “legal vacuum”.
The authorized cannabinoid drugs that a doctor can prescribe in Spain are Cesamet® (oral capsules of nabilone) as “medications from abroad” since they are not on the market in Spain, and Sativex® (orobuccal cannabis extract) by the normal way for multiple sclerosis and as “compassionate use” for different indications, for which clinical studies are underway (spasticity in other diseases, neuropathic pain and cancer, among others). The cost of both are provided by the administration.
It is difficult to quantify the number of patients treated with approved cannabinoids in Spain. In addition, there are many patients self-medicate with cannabis. Those patients self-cultivate it or accepts the donation by another grower or growers’ association, with relative tranquillity.
Source (Last updated March 2014)
Spaniards say yes to cannabis legalisation
MORE than half of the Spanish population is in favour of legalising cannabis consumption, says study.
The investigation, carried out by the Foundation for Aid against Drug Addiction (FAD) revealed that a 52 per cent of Spaniards is supportive of cannabis consumption amongst adults.
Through 1,456 interviews, the foundation has been able to determine that Spanish citizens treat cannabis in a different way than other illegal drugs. In fact, only a 20 per cent of the interviewees supported the legal consumption of cocaine.
This report was conducted previously in 1999 and 2004. The comparison of data reveals that Spanish population is now more open to cannabis commercialisation than ever before.
“There has been a development around the image of this drug, which could have contributed to an increase of a more cannabis-friendly population,” says the report.
Spaniards still think that drug use is hazardous and placed heroin and cocaine as the most dangerous ones. The report revealed that many citizens link the ruse of substances with the pursuit of new experiences and curiosity but also with personal, social or family problems.
Finally, a 61 per cent of interviewees were in favour of anti-tobacco laws and 15 per cent said these laws should be made stricter.
Is Cannabis Legal in Spain?
Yes and No…
However, since Spanish drug laws cannot reach into homes and other privately-owned spaces, the reach of the state’s drug policy is limited to public space. Read more
Cannabis Social Clubs and Associations Spain
If you are considering starting your own cannabis social club, collective or association here in Spain then take a look at Start Your Own Cannabis Club. Read more
Cannabis social clubs in Spain: legalisation without commercialisation
Cannabis social clubs (CSCs) are private, non-profit organisations in which cannabis is collectively grown and distributed to registered members. With no profit motive to increase cannabis consumption or initiate new users, the clubs offer a more cautious, public health-centred alternative to large-scale retail cannabis markets dominated by commercial enterprises. The growth of the CSC model in Spain demonstrates that cannabis legalisation does not have to mean commercialisation. As CSCs show, it is entirely possible to restrict the availability and promotion of cannabis while at the same time making the drug legally available to adult users. Read more
Medical Cannabis Spain (YouTube)
Will Barcelona Be the New Amsterdam? What Tourists Should Know About Cannabis in Spain
Over the past several decades, cannabis enthusiasts all over the world have come up with one creative solution after another in order to avoid harsh legal repercussions for cannabis consumption. Spanish cannabis consumers are no different. Read more.
Cada vez más jóvenes españoles apoyan la legalización del cannabis
Milímetro a milímetro, la regulación del cannabis para uso lúdico parece acercarse. En los últimos tiempos, cada pocos días aparece un indicio nuevo. Un país de referencia que lo legaliza, un juez que se pregunta por qué está prohibido, un Gobierno regional que anuncia una norma para los clubes de fumadores… el último indicio puede encontrarse en el Eurobarometro , que señala que los jóvenes españoles se muestran más proclives a su regulación según pasan los años. Read more
La 1ª Consulta Médica especializada en el uso terapeutico del cannabis abre en Barcelona
Abre en Barcelona Kalapa Clínic, la primera consulta médica centrada en asesorar al paciente sobre el uso terapéutico del cannabis, dirigida por el Dr. Mariano García Palau (nº. col. 16193, Barcelona), especialista en tratamientos coadyuvantes con cáñamo y derivados.
Kalapa Clínic es parte del holding español Global Group Kalapa, especializado en salud y alimentación a través de actividades relacionadas con el cáñamo industrial (a partir de semillas certificadas UE, con porcentaje inferior al 0,2% de THC). Read more
Spain is one of the most leading countries in Europa in terms of cannabis decriminalization. The country is also the inventor of and leader in the so called Cannabis Social Clubs. But lately, the Spanish government seems to be determined to bring an end to this revolutionary process. Check out this Cannabis News Network video from our team in Spain.
In Spain, cannabis is the most commonly used illegal drug. The Spanish Penal Code prohibits its sale but not the personal consumption in private places. Each autonomous community may schedule their way to cannabis legislation. But the law known as ‘Gag Rule’ of the Central Government threatens to toughen sanctions for holders and consumers of cannabis in public spaces, eliminating the possibility to replace it for a rehab treatment. They also want to increase fines from 1,000 to 30,000 euros. A huge nonsense at a time of global changes in drug policy.
The cannabis movement went out on the streets to demand their rights, with the complaint that despite the progress made so far, a common legal model has not yet been agreed upon, to which everyone agrees. The constant contradictions are also highlighted.
It looks as if the Spanish civil society is moving forward while its Government is putting spokes in the wheels. In Barcelona, as well as in Madrid, Valencia and many other cities in Spain, this is already apparent, from the results of the recent regional elections. This autumn, general elections will be held and the future of cannabis in Spain, will be dependent on its outcome.
The Cannabis News Network team in Spain went to Madrid to make a report. Check it out on Cannabis News Network.
Cannabis News Network is a news journal which publishes only cannabis related news.