x Abu Dhabi, UAE Friday 21 July 2017

Bid to expand law on addicts' exemptions

Police are seeking to extend the reach of a law that exempts drug addicts who inform authorities of their addiction problem from being prosecuted.

DUBAI // Police are seeking to extend the reach of a law that exempts drug addicts who inform authorities of their addiction problem from being prosecuted.

The force is suggesting that the exemption should be expanded to include the reporting of drug addicts by family members and friends.

A drug addict is penalised by law in Dubai when caught by police and their average sentence is four years' imprisonment. Expatriates are deported after they serve their sentences.

"The drug addict is an ill person who needs help and, therefore, we want to change the law so family members such as parents or siblings, and even friends, can help addicts by seeking our help," said Maj Gen Abdul al Jalil al Mahdi, who heads the police anti-drugs department.

The statement was made yesterday during the announcement of an anti-drugs awareness campaign aimed at the young, especially those from broken families.

"In this particular campaign, we aim to reach young people as they are an easy target for drug traffickers because of their social conditions," said Maj Gen al Mahdi.

The campaign, titled "A Nation Without Drugs", is to start on Sunday and is expected to last until June.

Police will co-operate with the Ministry of Social Affairs to reach out to the young and educate them about the danger of drugs.

wissa@thenational.ae