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Are Cannabis Expungements On The Way In Israel?

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News surfaced out of Israel yesterday regarding big changes to Israel’s current cannabis policy. A temporary order is currently in place in Israel that prevents criminal charges from being applied to cannabis-only offenses in certain instances.

Israel’s government announced plans over the weekend to make that temporary policy permanent. Per Haaretz:

The Israeli government is considering decriminalizing recreational marijuana use and expunging the criminal records of those convicted of personal possession or use of cannabis, President Isaac Herzog and Justice Minister Gideon Sa’ar announced Sunday.

On approval of the new regulations, those with recreational-use convictions would be able to submit a request to have their records voided, while those with pending criminal proceedings would be able to contact the police with a request to drop the charges. The move, said the statement, is intended “to lift the criminal labeling and the stain that accompanies it” and to “complement” decriminalization regulations published last month.

Unfortunately, the new policy does not extend to people that were charged/convicted during military service or to minors. The new policy does extend to drug paraphernalia charges, albeit not if the case involves a member of the military or a minor.

The policy announcement was coupled with news that personal cannabis use and possession would be ‘completely decriminalized’ with a maximum fine of 1,000 shekels. Passage of the policy change is expected as early as this week, and implementation would be immediate.

Last week Israel announced plans to decriminalize CBD over the course of two years. It’s unclear how this latest announcement affects the proposed CBD policy change.