Maastricht marijuana is for locals only, rules EU
Saturday 17 July 2010
No drugs please, you're foreigners.
The Dutch city of Maastricht is within its legal rights to ban tourists from buying marijuana in its coffee shops, a senior EU official has ruled.
The advocate general of the European Court of Justice decided that the right to free trade and free movement within the European Union has its limits. It cannot be applied to illegal substances such as marijuana, Yves Bot ruled yesterday.
If the ruling is upheld by the European Court in the next few months, the decision will allow the Dutch city to maintain a five-year-old ban on cannabis sales to tourists from neighbouring countries. Other Dutch cities may then follow suit.
The Netherlands has tolerated small over-the-counter sales of marijuana through "coffee shops" for many years, even though the drug remains illegal.
Marc Josemans, chairman of the Association of Official Maastricht Coffee Shops, challenged the by-law in a Dutch court. The Dutch sought the opinion of the European Court.
Maastricht had a right, Mr Bot said, to regard the 20,000 foreigners a day visiting the town as a "genuine and sufficiently serious threat to public order". The by-law was therefore "necessary ... in the face of troubles caused by drug tourism" and also helped to "combat the illicit trade in narcotics in the EU".
- 1 Australia to impose 24-hour curfew on all cats to protect endangered species
- 2 Model's video shoot on the beach interrupted by sudden landing of a group of illegal migrants
- 3 The difference between a psychopath and a sociopath
- 4 Black and ethnic minority people twice as likely to be hit by Tory cuts than white people, report finds
- 5 MH370 search: Boeing 777 wing that could match missing plane found on the French island of Reunion
Kate Winslet thanked 'particularly horrible' girl who bullied her at school after Titanic success
Australia to impose 24-hour curfew on all cats to protect endangered species
Israel accused of killing 75 children during day of 'carnage' and war crimes in Gaza war
MH370 search: Boeing 777 wing that could match missing plane found on the French island of Reunion
Madeleine McCann 'not the identity' of fair-haired girl found dead in suitcase in Australia
Yvette Cooper: Our choice is years of Tory rule under Jeremy Corbyn – or a return to a Labour government
Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn says 'we can learn a great deal from Karl Marx'
I am the Jeremy Corbyn supporter that many will tell you doesn't exist
Public anger after French sunbather beaten up by gang for wearing a bikini in Reims park
Labour leadership: New poll shows party is now even 'less electable' than under Ed Miliband
Labour leadership contest: I would never quit the party, says Liz Kendall
£20000 - £25000 per annum + competitive: SThree: SThree are a global FTSE 250...
£17900 - £20300 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An enthusiastic Marketing Assis...
£24000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This contract caterer is proud ...
£16000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic and exciting opport...