x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

'Spice' drug is freely available, accused's mother tells Dubai court

The mother of a 26-year-old man accused of consuming Spice tells the Dubai Criminal Court that the substance is freely available.

DUBAI // The mother of a man accused of consuming the synthetic cannabis drug spice said it is so widely available, even the Dubai Criminal Court could order some.

The mother of 26-year-old Emirati defendant MA, stood up in the middle of the court this morning after her son confessed to charges of possessing and consuming spice and said that the substance can be found anywhere in the country and can easily be ordered online.

"My son had an accident two years ago after which he suffered from a breakdown," she told the panel of judges. "He kept asking me to take him to a psychologist but I wouldn't do so. He then started taking this substance to make him feel better. Who wouldn't take it if it was not banned? I would take it to make me feel better. If the court orders some online, you will get it."

She added that the government should have banned it a long time ago.

"Spice was not banned and I heard that Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum issued a pardon in this regard, that's why I seek innocence," said MA to court.

Prosecutors said that police had a tip-off about the defendant, who had his home in Nad Al Hamar raided at dawn on September 12 - after the June 1 introduction of a ban on the drug. A bag containing the drug was found in his room, and some under his pillow.

A verdict will be issued on November 26.

salamir@thenational.ae