Those caught with drugs won't face criminal conviction until third offence under radical 'three-strike' plan

Tentative plans to decriminalise drugs were strongly opposed by Justice Minister Charlie Flanagan
Irish Independent (Ireland)
Friday, August 2, 2019

A 'three-strike' plan that will see people caught with small amounts of illegal drugs avoid criminal conviction on the first and second occasion but face the courts on the third will be unveiled by the Government of Ireland. Reforms to how those caught in possession of illicit substances are dealt with stop short of full decriminalisation, but represent a shift in the State's approach. The plan will see a health diversion programme whereby a person in possession of drugs for personal use will be referred to the HSE for screening and intervention. Those repeatedly caught in possession will still be dealt with by the criminal justice system and many existing drug laws are set to remain. (See also: 'Destined to fail': Opposition parties say government's new drug possession plan falls short)