More than 3,000 inmates imprisoned for marijuana possession have been freed since Thailand legalized cannabis.
The Corrections Department said 4,075 inmates had been detained for cannabis abuse. Of them, 3,071 had been jailed for marijuana crimes alone, and 1,004 also had been convicted of other crimes. Those with only cannabis-related crimes were freed. They comprised convicts and detainees pending trial.
For the convicts with other crimes, courts would lift their cannabis-related punishment, the department said.
On June 9, all parts of marijuana plants are removed from the government’s Category 5 narcotics list, except cannabis extracts with more than 0.2% content of tetrahydrocannabinol.
The delisting is expected to stimulate the economy. The Public Health Ministry has approved as many as 1,181 items of products with cannabis, hemp and cannabidiol including cosmetics, foods, herbs and Thai traditional medicines.
Paisarn Dunkum, secretary-general of the Food and Drug Administration, said more than 100,000 people registered for cannabis and hemp planting via an app.
The delisting was aimed at allowing households to use the plants to prepare traditional medicines for patients, he said.