Connor Clements relocated to Dubai—the most populous city of the United Arab Emirates and a global coalescing point for wealth and power (and the very stupid and extremely criminal things that happen when too much of either clouds sense)—because he wanted to turn his life around.
The 24-year-old from Liverpool, in the UK’s northeast, hadn’t been doing much at home: Smoking weed, hanging out, “stuck in a rut,” as he explained to the Liverpool Echo. Upon arriving in the Middle East, where as many as 240,000 fellow UK citizens live in Dubai, lured there by the boomtown economy and the notable absence of an income tax, Clements scored a job as a waiter—which is when his current “living nightmare” began.
Living Nightmare: UK Man Faces Jail In Dubai For Pot Smoked Before His Flight
As he related to the Liverpool Echo, Clements was sent in by his employers for a physical examination from a doctor. A new friend of his, who goes by “Sergei,” had apparently been arrested by the police for dealing drugs—he had 10 grams of cannabis on him, which might cost $100 at a dispensary in Colorado or California.
The authorities were alerted, and after a brief court appearance that sounds more like a show trial, he was sentenced to two years in prison for consuming marijuana in the UAE. As for Sergei? He was fined and then deported, apparently because he gave the cops enough names.
Clements admits to smoking cannabis but insists he did so weeks before his arrest and detention—while still back at home in England. That doesn’t matter in the UAE. The country has harsh anti-drug laws that consider the “presence of illegal substances in the body” as de-facto possession, according to the Echo.
Here’s Clements’ plea to the paper:
“They are saying I smoked it here—but I did [it] back home, they have got no proof… I used to smoke a lot back home. I came here to stop everything,” he said. “I haven’t committed a crime in the UAE. I was coming over here to totally change my life around. I had a new job and met loads of nice people.”
He’s currently out on bail ahead of an appeals hearing just before Christmas.
According to the paper, the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office, which advocates on behalf of UK citizens stuck in messy situations abroad, is aware of the situation and has contacted Dubai prosecutors on Clements’ behalf. In the meantime, he’s spent some time incarcerated in a crowded jail. He speaks no Arabic, and his captors speak no English, he said.
Credible Story? Very
Foreign nationals detained abroad for spurious circumstances is a frequent occurrence in Dubai, and the story of ancient, long-smoked joints causing real trouble is a familiar tourist tale.
At best, the authorities may have discovered “evidence” of a “crime” committed three months ago or more.
Faithful readers of this publication will no doubt be aware that cannabis metabolites stay in the body long after use. When THC is ingested, the body starts to break it down. THC becomes THC-COOH. THC-COOH is not water soluble—it’s fat soluble, which means it lingers in fatty tissue rather than cycling in and out of the body in a matter of hours, as happens with “hard drugs” like cocaine or heroin.
In this way, a urine test does not detect impairment, as California NORML explains, and is ergo not useful as a metric by law enforcement. Yet it persists, in part because no “better” method exists, but more due to the fact that states legalizing cannabis have been quick to outlaw “stoned driving,” despite a lack of devices that would provide data to determine whether that act is, in fact, actually happening.
Clement’s situation is more familiar to international travelers in places like Thailand, where tourists from the West (and the country’s accommodation of their notorious party lifestyles) have long been at odds with local police and the national mores.
The internet is full of stories of corrupt police, randomly ordering stoner-looking westerners to submit to a “piss test,” discovering evidence of past use and incarcerating or collecting a bribe from the hapless victim.
According to Radha Stirling, CEO of “Detained in Dubai,” a British NGO created because British people getting arrested and thrown into prisons in the desert wonderland is a common occurrence, Clements’ plight is not uncommon.
Connor Clements appeal to be ruled on 3 days before Christmas. … – Detained In Dubai https://t.co/ElC0jOTQgV
— Radha Stirling (@RadhaStirling) December 17, 2017
Might be time to stay away or refrain from relating your drug habits to “new friends.”
The Return Of The Super Sativa Seed Club
Getting Lost At The FounderMade Discovery Show West
Oklahoma Lawyer Pleads Guilty to Staging Threats From Irate Cannabis Proponents
Study Suggests Legal Cannabis Could Create Over 100,000 Jobs in Florida
Expert Lighting Advice For Taking Your Grow To The Next Level
The Rebirth Of Subcool: The Inside Story Of A Legendary Bud Breeder
The Best Hydroponic Methods For Growing Cannabis Yourself
Authorities Investigating “Dank” Cartridges As Possible Culprit In Vape-Related Illnesses
Grow6 days ago
Master Of Hash: Frenchy Cannoli’s Plan To Change The World Of Hashmaking
News6 days ago
Researchers Study How to Treat Cannabis Addiction With More Cannabis
News4 days ago
Canadian Cannabis Company Will Sell Marijuana For Less Than $5 Per Gram
Activism5 days ago
Compassion Lives on in California as Governor Signs The Dennis Peron and Brownie Mary Act
News6 days ago
Kushy Punch Under Scrutiny For Allegedly Making Illegal Vape Cartridges
News5 days ago
California Governor Signs Several Marijuana-Related Bills
News5 days ago
Comprehensive Marijuana Legalization Bill Introduced in Pennsylvania
News5 days ago
Florida Man Calls Police to Report His Roommate For Stealing His Weed