Correspondence

CONTROLLED DRUGS

Home Office circular 039 / 2003 CONTROLLED DRUGS Broad subject: Crime and Disorder Issue date: Wed Jun 25 00:00:00 BST 2003 From: CRIME…

Documents

SI 2003 No 1243.pdf (PDF file - 218kb)

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SI 2003 No1432.doc (Microsoft Word file - 27kb)

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Detail

Home Office circular 039 / 2003

CONTROLLED DRUGS

  • Broad subject: Crime and Disorder
  • Issue date: Wed Jun 25 00:00:00 BST 2003
  • From:
    CRIME REDUCTION & COMMUNITY SAFETY GROUP Drug Legislation and Enforcement Unit
  • Linked circulars:
    No Linked Circulars
  • Copies sent to:
    Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland,Association of Chief Police Officers (England,Wales and Northern Ireland),Association of Magisterial Officers ,HM Magistrates Courts Service Inspectorate,The Central Council of Magistrates’ Courts ,The Justices’ Clerks’ Society ,The Law Society,The Magistrates’ Association ,The Association of Justices’ Chief Executives

  • Sub category: Drug related crime
  • Implementation date: Tue Jul 01 00:00:00 BST 2003
  • For more info contact:
    Jeremy Sare 020 7273 2994
  • Addressed to:
    Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales ,Lords Justice of Appeal ,Queens’ Bench Division Judges ,The Chief Crown Prosecutor ,The Circuit Administrator ,The Clerk to the Justices ,The Court Administrator,The Court Manager Stipendiary Magistrates ,The Director of Criminal Operations,The Director of Public Prosecutions ,The Justices’ Chief Executive of the Magistrates’ Court Committee ,The Registrar of Criminal Appeals ,Chief Officers of Police,(England and Wales),(Northern Ireland) ,(Scotland) ,Crown Court Judges,The Chairmen of the Bench,The Chief Clerk to the Crown Court

MISUSE OF DRUGS ACT 1971 (MODIFICATION) ORDER 2003 (SI 2003 No. 1243)
MISUSE OF DRUGS REGULATIONS 2003 (SI 2003 No. 1432)

  • This Circular describes changes to the misuse of drugs legislation made by the two above-named instruments (copies attached). The instruments will come into force on 1 July 2003.

  • Eight substances are brought under the controls of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 and its associated subordinate legislation for the first time.

  • Remifentanil and Dihydroetorphine are controlled as Class A drugs - both are powerful opiates and have similar pharmacological properties to existing Class A drugs. Both are listed under Schedule 2 of the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001.

  • 4-Hydoxy-n-butyric acid or Gammahydroxy-butyrate (GHB) and Zolpidem **
    are controlled as Class C drugs. Both are listed under **Schedule 4 Part I
    of the 2001 Regulations. GHB has been used as an anaesthetic and to treat alcohol and drug dependence but has also been misused by clubbers. Zolpidem is a prescription medicine and acts in a similar same way as some sedatives such as benzodiazepines.

  • The 4 anabolic substances (mentioned below) are to be listed in Schedule 4 Part II of the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001. 4-Androstene-3, 17-dione, 19-Nor-4-Androstene-3, 17-dione, 5-Androstene-3, 17-diol and 19-Nor-5-Androstene-3, 17- diol are to be controlled as Class C drugs.

The Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 (Modification) Order 2003 (SI 2003 No. 1243)

1. This Order adds two substances, Remifentanil and Dihydroetorphine, to the list of Class A drugs specified in Part I of Schedule 2 to the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971. This Order also adds 6 substances (4-Hydoxy-n-butyric acid or gammahydroxy-butyrate (GHB), Zolpidem, 4-Androstene-3, 17-dione, 19-Nor-4-Androstene-3, 17-dione, 5-Androstene-3, 17-diol and 19-Nor-5-Androstene-3, 17 dione) to the list of Class C drugs specified under Part III of Schedule 2 of the Act. The maximum penalties for offences involving Class A, B and C drugs are specified in Schedule 4 to the 1971 Act (as amended).

2. There is some evidence to suggest that some of the eight substances have been produced in clandestine laboratories for the illicit drugs market in the last few years, and there have been a few police seizures of some of these substances in the United Kingdom.

The Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2003 (SI 2003 No. 1432)

3. This instrument adds the above mentioned eight substances to the list of drugs specified in the Schedules of the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001.

4. Dihydroetorphine **and Remifentanil are included in Schedule 2. Companies wishing to produce, supply or possess Dihydroetorphine or Remifentanil will require an appropriate production, supply or possession licence. In relation to imports and exports, licences will also be required for each consignment imported and exported. Schedule 2 drugs are also subject to the additional prescription requirements of Regulation 15; amongst other things, prescriptions must be handwritten by doctors. Regulations 14 (documentation), 16 (supply on prescription), 18 (marking of containers), 19, 20, 21, 23 (keeping and preservation of registers), 26 (furnishing of information) and 27 (destruction) also apply to Schedule 2 drugs. Most Schedule 2 drugs are also subject to the statutory safe custody requirements.

Schedule 4 Part I (4-Hydroxy-n-butyric acid or Gammahydroxybutyrate (GHB) and Zolpidem)

5. Schedule 4 Part I includes benzodiazepines (e.g. diazepam, lorazepam and nitrazepam). Gammahydroxybutyrate (GHB) and Zolpidem will be added to the list of drugs in Schedule 4 Part I. Persons already authorised by the Regulations (e.g. doctors and pharmacists), or by a written Home Office authority to produce, supply or possess Schedule 4 Part I drugs, will automatically be so authorised in respect of GHB and zolpidem. In other cases an appropriate written Home Office authority will be required. Licences are also required for imports and exports of Schedule 4 Part I drugs. The Regulation 15 prescription requirements (including handwriting) do not apply to Schedule 4 Part I drugs. Regulations 22, 23 (keeping and preservation of records), 26 (furnishing of information) and 27 (destruction - holders of written authorities to produce only) also apply to Schedule 4 Part I drugs. Schedule 4 Part I drugs are not subject to the safe custody requirements.

Schedule 4 Part II (The 4 anabolic substances)

6. Schedule 4 Part II comprises of 54 anabolic substances, e.g. nandrolone and testosterone. Four more anabolic substances 4-Androstene-3, 17-dione, 19-Nor-4-Androstene-3, 17-dione, 5-Androstene-3, 17-diol and 19-Nor-5-Androstene-3, 17-diol **will be added to Schedule4 Part II. Persons already authorised by the 2001 Regulations (e.g. doctors and pharmacists) or by a written Home Office authority to produce, supply or possess* Schedule 4 Part II drugs will automatically be authorised in respect of these four drugs. In other cases an appropriate written Home Office authority will be required. [* NB Possession licences are not required if the substances are in medicinal product form.]

7. Import and export licences are required for the trade in Schedule 4 Part II substances but individuals are exempt when they are imported/exported for personal use in a medicinal form. The Regulation 15 prescription requirements (including handwriting) do not apply to Schedule 4 Part II drugs. Regulations 22, 23 (keeping and preservation of records), 26 (furnishing of information) and 27 (destruction - holders of written authorities to produce only) also apply to Schedule 4 Part II drugs. Schedule 4 Part II drugs are not subject to the statutory safe custody requirements.

Enquiries

8. Any enquiries about the contents of this Circular may be addressed to Jeremy Sare of the Drug Legislation and Enforcement (DLEU), Home Office, 50 Queen Anne’s Gate,
London SW1H 9AT (Tel: 020 7273 2994) or to the regional offices of the Home Office Drugs Branch Inspectorate whose addresses and telephone numbers are attached.
Tony Hall
HOME OFFICE DRUGS BRANCH INSPECTORATE - REGIONAL OFFICES

South East Region

Home Office Drugs Branch Inspectorate
South East Regional Office
50 Queen Anne’s Gate
London SW1H 9AT

Tel: 020 7273 3815
020 7273 3867
020 7273 3856
020 7273 3727
020 7273 3765

Northern Region (includes Scotland)

Home Office Drugs Branch Inspectorate
Northern Regional Office
Jefferson House
27 Park Place
Leeds LS1 2SZ

Tel: 0113 2214572
0113 2204573
0113 2204574

Midland Region (includes Wales)

Home Office Drugs Branch Inspectorate
Midland Regional Office
PO Box 26
Bristol BS99 7HQ

Tel: 0117 927 6736

Attachments

SI 2003 No 1243.pdf