If you've been reading my blog posts then you know that many states in America along with other foreign countries like Spain and Italy are becoming more cannabis friendly. Just because some countries are becoming more lenient in their marijuana regulations doesn't mean you should assume the rest of the world is accepting of it (unfortunately). You could wind up in serious trouble if you toke on the wrong corner in the wrong country. Let's take a look at some of the stricter countries that you shouldn't even think about entering with the scent of marijuana on your clothes.
The United Arab Emirates tops the list being one of the most strict countries in regards to marijuana laws. Sure, people may have wondered if those sheikhs are hiding all kinds of things under their thawb (man dress) but be assured that it's probably not a joint as they can get a mandatory sentence of 4 years in prison. If your pothead friend is considering taking a trip to Dubai then be sure to tell him that he should take a few weeks off hitting the bong before he goes. Being caught with it in your urine or blood it is considered "possession" and you can get punished.
5 years and with a hefty fine of thousands and thousands of dollars
Malaysia is another place that you shouldn't light up a doobie. You can find yourself in jail for 5 years and with a hefty fine of thousands and thousands of dollars. If you're caught with 50 grams then you will get a minimum 5 year jail sentence along with a probably lashing- at least 10 strikes. If you so much as plant a cannabis seed you could face life in prison with minimum 6 lashings. Getting caught dealing 200 grams or more cannabis could lead to a sentence of death by hanging; they're not messing around.
Forget about growing cannabis in the Philippines
The Philippines' Dangerous Drugs Act is enough to keep you clean in this country. The first time you're caught lighting up a joint you can be sent to at least 6 months in rehab. If you're still not "cured" according to them and try lighting up again then they dramatically increase the sentence to jail time of 6 to 12 years. Forget about growing cannabis in the Philippines. Planting this great herb could get you a life sentence or death.
This next country also missed the memo of how sweet our buds are. Japanese citizens get a harsh sentence like a 5 year jail sentence with added hard labor, even for just a joint. However, for first time offenders they are looking more at a 6 month sentence. The Japanese public view our precious bud as a something evil. If a foreigner is smoking in their country they will get deported without hope of ever returning.
Indonesia is a popular tourist destination. Bali's chill vibes would get you thinking that cannabis is ok there, but avoid it at all cost. A single joint can land you in an Indonesian jail for up to 4 years. Importing cannabis is no joke there; you could be sentenced to 15 years for that. There's a case involving an Australian that nearly got a death sentence by firing squad. She got a break by only getting 20 years in jail. Strangely, 20 years in prison doesn't sound like much of a break but when compared to getting shot to death it certainly looks a bit brighter.
Thailand may be able to satisfy our taste buds with their delicious cuisines but they lack in the particular buds we want to smoke. All marijuana is illegal in Thailand and carrying just a small amount can already get you in jail. Whether you are buying or selling cannabis you can get sentenced to 3 months to 5 years in prison along with a fine. A heavier penalty is for those that are get caught growing or trafficking marijuana. Although pot isn’t tolerated there are stories of some cops being bribed not to turn offenders in. It’s not really a risk you want to take though.
Even though the cannabis laws may not be perfect where you live, consider yourself lucky if you don’t live in one of these countries with strict cannabis laws. When traveling abroad do your research to see if cannabis is tolerated before lighting up a joint. The last thing you want on your vacation is a jail sentence.