Cannabis possession offences fall 75pc in a decade as police accused of decriminalising the drug

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Cannabis possession offences have dropped up to 75 per cent in 10 years, as MPs have accused police of decriminalising the drug.

New figures show that the number of recorded crimes for possessing cannabis have plummeted across UK police forces since 2008, with more than half recording 40 per cent fewer cannabis crimes.

The drop comes despite cannabis remaining the most popular drug in the country.

The highest drop was overseen by Greater Manchester Police, where the number of cannabis possession crimes fell by 75 per cent. The crime also declined in Leicestershire by 70 per cent and 67 per cent in Cambridgeshire.

Only three of the 43 forces showed any significant increase on 2008:Wiltshire (33 per cent), Dorset (9 per cent) and Bedfordshire (9 per cent).

The figures, collated by The Times, come amid growing calls from police chiefs and police and crime commissioners for a review of legislation on drugs, particularly around cannabis.

Norman Lamb, the Liberal Democrat MP and a former health minister, said: “What we are witnessing is a de facto drift towards decriminalisation but without any debate, without any role of government, without national oversight. This is police and PCCs [commissioners] exercising judgment when faced with almost impossible restrictions on resources.”



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