September 26, 2021
Three Hiroshima city men have been arrested on suspicion of cultivating cannabis on the island of Osaki Kamijima, just off the coast of Takehara in Hiroshima Prefecture.
The three men in their early 40s (their names have been made public, but we will not include them in this post) are suspected of cultivating the plants in the mountainous interior of the island between June and August this year. Police began investigations after the owner of the land reported that the area was being cultivated without permission. They have been arrested on suspicion of violating Japan’s strict Cannabis Control Act.
Police seized around 60 cannabis plants from an area around 130 square meters and are investigating how the men came into possession of the plants. They believe that they were cultivating the plants with intent to sell.
RCC News reports that, according to police, the number of cannabis-related prosecutions is on the rise, especially among the younger generation. They conjecture that false information about cannabis being spread via social media is a factor in this trend and they are calling for people to fully understand the risks of “dependency and effects on the body.”
The Cannabis Control Act criminalizes the import, export or growing of marijuana in Japan and orders heavy punishment for those that break the law. Growing, importing or exporting marijuana in Japan can be punished with up to 7 years in prison. However, engaging in any of those acts with the intent to profit carries a heavier punishment of imprisonment for up to 10 years. Similarly, simple possession of marijuana carries a sentence of up to 5 years of prison, while possession with the intent to profit is punishable by up to 7 years imprisonment and/or up to a 2,000,000 fine.
- Translation for the Cannabis Control Act
- New panel to probe growing use of marijuana and stiffen draconian pot law (January 2021)