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Traveling Internationally With Drugs

The topic of traveling internationally with illegal drugs has been getting a lot of attention lately. With many states in the US legalizing marijuana recreationally, and even more states legalizing marijuana medicinally, the question regarding traveling with marijuana, which is still illegal at the federal level, is an interesting one. Despite the fact that cannabis is legal in many states, traveling internationally with marijuana is unequivocally still illegal. Attempting to do this is very risky. If you find yourself in trouble because you were traveling with marijuana or another illegal substance, it’s imperative to contact a criminal defense attorney right away.

Traveling Across State Lines With Marijuana Is Illegal

If you’re in a state where marijuana is legal, recreationally or medicinally, it’s still illegal to carry that marijuana across state lines to another state where marijuana is legal. This is because federally, marijuana has still not been legalized. Once you start crossing state borders, it becomes a federal crime. This is true for flying in an airplane while transporting marijuana as well.

Traveling Internationally With Marijuana

While there are several countries where marijuana is legal, it’s still illegal to travel internationally with marijuana. It doesn’t matter if the weed is purchased in the United States legally and then you travel to a country where it’s legal. The act of transporting the drug is still not permitted. This is true whether you’re traveling by plane, train, car, boat, on foot, or any other means of transportation.

It’s also necessary to note that border patrol agents are legally allowed to search you and your vehicle. If you’re caught with marijuana, the best-case scenario is that it’s confiscated and thrown away. The worst-case scenario is you’re barred from ever entering that country, and you’re placed under arrest.

Transportation Security Administration (TSA) Is Not Looking For Marijuana

According to the TSA, they are not actively searching for marijuana while you are traveling through the airports. However, transporting it on a plane is still very risky because it’s technically illegal. If your bag is randomly searched or it is somehow discovered that you have marijuana in your possession, the TSA will generally refer it to state law enforcement. State law enforcement may or may not decide to press charges or alert the federal authorities. Given this uncertainty and the fact that it’s still illegal, the risk isn’t worth it.

What About Other Prescription Drugs?

Many people are prescribed controlled substances such as opiates, benzodiazepines, and stimulants, that they need every day in order to treat various illnesses. While these may be completely legal in the United States with a valid prescription, traveling with them can be complicated and risky. Before you travel anywhere, you need to research the laws of the country you’re going to. Additionally, you should contact the foreign embassy of the country that you are visiting to ask if your prescriptions can be brought into the country or not.

If you are allowed to bring the prescriptions with you, there may be a limit on how much you can bring. Many countries only allow you to bring 30 days’ worth of medication. If that’s the case, but you will be there for longer than 30 days, you should contact the nearest US embassy or consulate, which should be able to connect you with doctors or pharmacies that can assist you in filling your prescription if necessary.

Attorney William S. Kroger Can Help

Many people use marijuana and other controlled substances as legitimate medication for pain or anxiety. Unfortunately, marijuana is still illegal federally, which means traveling with medicinal marijuana is not permitted. As you can see, it can also be illegal to travel with prescription medications in some circumstances. If you were arrested for traveling with marijuana or another prescription medication and you need help, Attorney William S. Kroger is here for you. He has been a criminal defense attorney for more than two decades. Additionally, he is admitted to practice in several federal jurisdictions. Don’t hesitate to reach out for a free, confidential consultation. Set up a meeting by calling 323-655-5700 or by messaging us today.

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