Brazil's Supreme Court Could Rule in Favor of Decriminalizing Drugs

As the drug policy reform debate heats up in the country, Brazil’s Supreme Court is set to discuss decriminalizing the personal possession and use of drugs.

On August 19, the Supreme Court (STF) will begin the debate and aim to rule on whether criminalizing low-level possession and use offenses is unconstitutional, reported Agencia Brasil.

The hearing -- originally due to take place on August 13 -- comes as a result of a filing by São Paulo's Public Defense Office which argues that possession of drugs for personal use should not be a crime because it does not harm third parties.

Pedro Abramovay, director of the Latin America Program at the Open Society Foundations, has called on the Supreme Court to clearly determine what thresholds constitute possession for personal use in order to tackle Brazil's high rates of incarceration. He told Agencia Brasil that, "This is not a minor issue,...

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