Les modifications du protocole de police en Ecosse signifient que les gens pris avec de petites quantités de cannabis feront l’objet d’avertissements délivrés aussitôt par la police plutôt que de poursuites judiciaires. Pour en savoir plus, en anglais, veuillez lire les informations ci-dessous.

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By David Leask

People caught with small quantities of cannabis will face on-the-spot warnings from police rather than prosecution.

The change in enforcing drug laws is part of a major overhaul of how officers handle petty offending to free up police and prosecutors’ time.

Scottish officers will next month start issuing new "Recorded Police Warnings" to many of the tens of thousands of people a year found committing minor offences such as carrying cannabis, urinating in the street or petty shoplifting.

Senior police sources stress they are looking for a "proportionate" and "effective" disposal to the kind of offences that until now would either result in a fixed-penalty notice or a report to the Crown Office that ended either in no proceedings or a fiscal warning.

The change in tactic means that - for the first time - casual users of cannabis can expect to avoid the stress of a formal report to fiscals that - in recent years - has rarely resulted in anything more than a written rebuke.

One source said: "We think a warning on the spot - from an officer using his or her discretion - is much more effective than a letter in the post months later saying nothing will be done.

"This means that officers will not have to spend their time writing standard prosecution reports and can do police work instead."

The new recorded police warnings scheme, formally to be introduced on January 11, replaces a series of adult police warnings used in different ways across the the old eight legacy police forces.

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Thumbnail: Flickr CC Nina B